Saturday, November 8, 2014

Coaching, a Professional Development Lesson from Sports

Ann Donovan WNBA Coach- LA Storm
Coaches are key. This is definitely true in professional sports. Despite the fact that everyone playing is spectacularly talented in their own right, they need guidance, an outside eye and direction. This is what coaches bring in- a game plan, a training regime and vision.

Many of the school districts I work with are using technology coaches as a transitional strategy in a move to one to one device integration. They do that for budgetary reasons and I understand that BUT change is slow (4-7 years) according to research. If we withdraw the support it is not likely to be as excellent.

Why a coach? A coach can get to know everyone, their capacities, and motivations. Coaches can help professionals get to the peek of their performance be it financial physical or in our case educational. If professional sports teams need coaches schools should not be abashed about using them.

My small tiny message here is that maybe we should think about coaches as a permanent part of school improvement and technology integration. In a perpetual cycle of development and adaptation we need someone who can guide, maintain a wider vision and push individuals to perform. Some of that role may be in the building administrator but not all for example this research from ASCD. For coaching to work we know that we need it to be in a low stakes non-evaluative environment that helps all teachers to grow.

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