This morning I received an email with this question: "As a new coach in a new position for my school district, what are my first steps? My title is ESL District Coach." Here's some advice.
"I'll soon become an instructional coach. I have no idea what I'm doing. Can you give me some suggestions for things I can do this summer to prepare?"
"I wish I could just crawl inside your mind and see what happens when you coach."
Last week I received this question from a coach: "At the end of the day, after a day of intense coaching and high emotion, what do I do with those feelings and take care of myself? This is very hard for me."
A coaching framework is an articulation of the purpose of the program, the ways in which it works, its intended outcomes and expectations, the skills of its coaches, and its theoretical underpinnings. A coaching model helps guide and direct the actions of practitioners and participants, as well as those monitoring and evaluating the program.
Heartbreaking. Heartbreaking and unnecessary. These have been the phrases most consistently running through my mind as I've read the news about the Atlanta testing scandal.
For many years, I've been mulling over the idea of professional development on emotional resilience. What continuously comes up in my work is that our emotions play a big role in how effective we are in transforming our schools, and specifically, in our ability to bounce back after challenges.
Recently, I suggested that all coaches should be coaches for equity--that it is our moral obligation and that if we aren't coaching for equity we are complicit in reproducing an inequitable system. I want offer some concrete ways in which we can coach teachers and leaders within our education system to build more equitable classrooms and schools.
What does your "inner coach landscape" look like? Who are you being when you coach? How can you better get to know the terrain of yourself as a coach?
I figure this is a good time of year to declare my hopes and wishes related to coaching--specifically to coaching that could transform schools--and so here's my short list that only needs the wave of a magic wand.