Issues with teacher retention and shortages are having serious negative consequences for students and educators. When teachers are dissatisfied with their work environments and aren’t receiving adequate support, it can impact their students’ academic progress and overall school experience. This academic year, teachers are facing a variety of challenges as they work to help students recover from the pandemic’s impacts on learning. It is more critical than ever that districts identify ways to retain and support quality teachers. Instructional coaching is a vital piece of the puzzle. While coaching can be an effective strategy to support teachers and improve academic outcomes, it needs to be informed by data to really ensure it’s having the desired impact.

TeachBoost recently surveyed educators from 86 different school districts across a variety of roles, experience levels, and grade levels to find out what’s working, what’s not, and what should change about instructional coaching programs. The findings were released in the 2022 Coaching Impact Report. This new national report offers valuable insights and takeaways to help district leaders and educators build quality coaching programs.

Leaders Need Access to Data
Every student deserves an excellent education and a teacher who is properly supported. Coaching can help ensure that high-quality, equitable instruction is reaching more classrooms — but leaders need access to data to prove it’s working.

One common challenge that surfaced from the report is that many leaders and coaches aren’t able to prove the impact of their coaching programs. The report revealed that while most districts (79%) use metrics to measure student mastery, achievement, and outcomes, 81% of schools and districts surveyed do not have the data or tools to measure the time, effort, and impact of their coaching programs.

This reflects exactly what I have seen in my work with schools over the past 12 years. Having data on coaching programs has become even more important now as districts are looking for effective ways to close learning gaps that are disproportionately impacting some of our most underserved students. Leaders want evidence that shows that investing in their coaching program is making a difference in teacher retention and student outcomes.

The report showed that most respondents (78%) agreed that districts with access to real-time, aggregated coaching data aligned to instructional goals can make more proactive and informed decisions about how to improve instruction. Yet, only 21% of respondents say they always use data to drive coaching decisions, and 57% say they often use data but would like to have more. Among school leaders, most (81%) shared that they want to use coaching data to make decisions but they don’t have access to the right data to make informed decisions.

Read the full article about data-informed instructional coaching by Jason DeRoner at Getting Smart.