According to Jim Knight, someone I work with as an instructional coaching trainer, up to 90% of what teachers learn alongside coaches will be retained. This means, that unlike traditional professional development where Knight's research shows that teachers lose 90% of what they learn, coaching can provide an enormous impact.
Knight's work is highly respected, and is highly respectful of teachers. Instructional coaching, in Knight's research and philosophy, is about working in partnership with teachers where the learning is reciprocal on the part of the teacher and coach. After all, we can learn a lot from one another.
In order for coaching to work properly, the school has to have a climate conducive to learning, which means that there needs to be a balance between risk-taking and rule following. It also means that teachers need to be able to trust that the coaching-teaching relationship will be confidential, something Knight believes both parties should come to an agreement on before the coaching relationship even begins.
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