An instructional coach works with teachers to improve the quality of their classes and the quality of students' education. They serve as mentors and role models, helping teachers to stay cool and to use the latest techniques and technologies in their classrooms. Another key finding was that coaching promotes the implementation of learning and mutual responsibility. Coaching is an integrated support that tries to respond to the needs of students and teachers in a continuous, coherent and dedicated way.
The likelihood of using new learning and sharing responsibility increases when colleagues, guided by a coach, work together and hold each other accountable to improve teaching and learning. An instructional coach is an educational leader who works in a school or district to help teachers achieve their goals. Effective instructors act as thinking partners, build relationships based on trust and mutual respect, and provide thoughtful, research-oriented feedback rather than making judgments. Finally, the Annenberg report found that coaching supports collective leadership throughout the school system.
For example, in her book The Art of Coaching, Aguilar (201) presents a case study of an eighth-grade teacher receiving training. The Annenberg report found that data-guided training programs helped create coherence within a school by focusing on strategic areas of need suggested by evidence, rather than by individual and sometimes conflicting opinions. Coaching creates a relationship in which the client feels cared for and, therefore, can access and implement new knowledge. The goal of teacher-centered training is to help improve their educational practice by making teachers more aware of their strategies in the classroom.
The curriculum is self-directed and free to access online, so people who want to obtain training certification can easily access it and follow the steps at their own pace. Instructional training topics may include classroom management and how to discuss professional and pedagogical topics with colleagues. Fortunately, there is increasing research that indicates that coaching can help create the conditions necessary for teaching practices to change and student outcomes to improve. Coaches can do this work together with teachers, reflecting on their own identities and biases and, at the same time, guiding teachers through this work.
To increase the impact of equity work, coaches research curricula, resources, evaluations, policies, pedagogical practices, and processes together with teachers, administrators, and school board members from an equity perspective. Effective training programs respond to the particular needs suggested by the data, allowing improvement efforts to focus on issues such as closing performance gaps and advocating for equity. Without these key principles, there will be no significant changes and neither party will gain the benefits of a coaching relationship. Instructors have the unique opportunity to work alongside a variety of teachers and administrators in a variety of grades and content areas.
The best coaches also participate as students, supporting others as they share their experience with the school community.