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Whole-Faculty Study Groups™ National Center 961 Heard Avenue Augusta, GA 30904
Ph: 706/736-0756 Fax: 706/737-4019

Carlene U. Murphy

Carlene U. Murphy began her 45th consecutive year of work in public schools in September 2002. She was an elementary teacher for fifteen years, coordinator of programs for the gifted for five years, and director of staff development for fifteen years in the Richmond County (Augusta, GA) Public Schools. From 1993 to 2003, she has worked at the national level in public schools. Carlene developed and named the Whole-Faculty Study GroupT (WFSG) approach to professional development.

Dr. Carlene Murphy

Carlene is a native Augustan and a product of the Richmond County Public Schools. When she is asked how long she worked for the Augusta school district, she says, "If you count first graders as workers, that would be 50 years. I entered first grade in 1942 and retired from the district in 1992." She is also proud to share that her grandson entered Richmond Academy in 2002 as a ninth grader, 50 years after she entered in 1952. She did her undergraduate work at Georgia Teachers College, now known as Georgia Southern. Her graduate degrees are from the University of Georgia.

The fifteen years (1978 - 1993) as the Richmond County (Augusta, GA) School District's Director of Staff Development brought many accolades to the district. In 1991, Richmond County received the American Association of School Administrators' Award for Outstanding Achievement in Professional Development. The district also received Georgia's Outstanding Staff Development Program Award for two consecutive years. In 1992 Carlene was awarded one of the National Staff Development Council's highest honors, The Contributions to Staff Development Award. She was the first practitioner to receive that honor.

Carlene's personal service to the National Staff Development Council includes chairing the annual national conference in Atlanta in 1986. She served as president in 1988, serving on the Board of Trustees from 1984 to 1990. While on NSDC's Board of Trustees (BOT), Carlene championed the notion that NSDC should have state affiliates, formalized the proposal to the BOT, and served as the first affiliate liaison on the BOT. Carlene and her husband are two of the four founders of the Georgia Staff Development Council, she served as its first president, and presented GSDC as NSDC's first affiliate. Carlene has also conducted a number of Professional Development Institutes for the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

After retiring from the Richmond County Schools in 1993 and through 1997, Carlene worked as a private consultant, working with schools and districts that wanted to implement WFSG. The work described in the book, Whole-Faculty Study Groups: Creating Student Based Professional Development, began in the Richmond County (GA) School District in 1987.

From the summer of 1997 through December 2002, Carlene was associated with ATLAS Communities, a national comprehensive school reform design. All ATLAS Communities schools are Whole-Faculty Study GroupsT schools.

Carlene's husband, Joe, was a principal and district level instructional supervisor in DeKalb County for 20 years. After moving to Augusta, he joined the faculty of Augusta State University, later becoming the dean of the school of education. They have six children (his, hers, & theirs) and eight grandchildren.


Murphy, C. U. and Lick, D. W. (2001, Second Edition). Whole-faculty study groups: Creating student-based professional development. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Murphy, C. U. and Lick, D. W. (1998, First Edition). Whole-faculty study groups: A powerful way to change schools and enhance learning. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Murphy, C. (2001). The Principal as Study Group Leader. Journal of Staff Development. Vol. 22, No. 1.

Murphy, C. (1999). Use time for faculty study. Journal of Staff Development. Vol. 20, No. 2.

Murphy, C (1999). Powerful designs: Study groups. Journal of Staff Development. Vol. 20, No. 3.

Murphy, C. (1997). Finding time for faculties to study together. Journal of Staff Development. Vol. 18, No. 3.

Murphy, C. (1995). Whole-faculty study groups: Doing the seemingly undoable. Journal of Staff Development, 16 (3). 37-44.

Murphy, C. (1992). Study groups foster school-wide learning. Educational Leadership, 50 (30, 71-74.

Murphy, C. (1991). Lessons from a journey into change. Educational Leadership, 48 (8), 63-67.

Murphy, C. (1991). Changing organizational culture through administrative study groups. The Developer. Newspaper of the National Staff Development Council, 1, 4.

Joyce, B., Murphy, C., Showers, B., & Murphy, J. (1989). School renewal as cultural change. Educational Leadership, 47 (3), 70-77.