Washington State’s Coaching Framework
The Childcare Quality and Early Learning Center for Research and Professional Development (CQEL) has played a critical role in developing the Early Achievers coaching. Additionally, a Coach Support Team exists within CQEL and works to train and provide ongoing professional development for Early Achievers coaches.
CQEL developed the Early Achievers Coach Model by combining three Practice-Based Coaching Processes (shared goal setting, focused observation, feedback and reflection) with three Guiding Principles (Resilience, Cultural Competence, Parallel Process) to create a holistic coaching approach which supports adult learning, practice, and confidence. The Coach Model has been informed by research on effective coaching practices for early educators, best practices in the area of cultural competence, and research on the importance of resilience as an aspect of adult and child success in school and beyond. The Coach Support Team works with Early Achievers coaches across Washington State to provide initial training on the Coach Model, as well as ongoing development in the form of monthly webinars, individual consultation, intensive trainings, and internships.
Each month, the Coach Support Team offers a webinar that focuses on a particular topic or practice related to the Coach Model. The purpose of webinars is to facilitate dialogue among coaches, provide new information on specific topics, and share new tools or resources with coaches to enhance their coaching work. Webinars have addressed topics such as Resilience: Choosing your attention, Cultural Competence: Welcoming the stranger, Goal Setting: Using CLASS™ data to inform goal setting, and many other topics.
All coaches are introduced to the Early Achievers Coach Model in a two-day training. This training highlights the Practice-Based Coaching foundations of shared goal setting, focused observation, and feedback and reflection. Coaches receive training to use specific strategies and tools related to this foundational process they can use in their work with early educators. Training also introduces the Early Achievers Coaching Model Guiding Principles of resilience, cultural competence, and parallel process. These Guiding Principles address best practices in working with adults, and coaches gain specific strategies to (1) promote these Guiding Principles in their own practice, and (2) help early childhood educators promote the Guiding Principles in their work with children and families.
The Coach Support Team also provides individual consultation with coaches related to each coach’s specific work and his or her own professional development goals. Coach and consultant pairs meet once a month, and go through the Practice-Based Coaching cycle of goal setting, observation and feedback, and reflection. This individual consultation creates a venue in which coaches can problem-solve and connect to specific resources, and in which consultants can ensure that each coach is fully supported as they use the Coach Model with early educators.
Haring Center Internships
The Haring Center for Research and Training in Inclusive Education has a focus on inclusive care and education for children with special needs and the families who care for them. This focus complements CQEL’s coach support efforts with expertise in a high demand, but low service area of professional development: implementation of individualized support for children with challenging behaviors. The partnership includes Haring Center internships, access to the Haring Center’s lending library, and access to a coach consultant who specializes in individualized support for children with special needs.
The Early Achievers Framework
Early Achievers Coaching is designed to give child care providers the support and skills they need in order to prepare children for success in school. In this document we describe the guiding principles of our coaching approach; the Early Achievers framework for school readiness, which serves as the focus for our coaching efforts; and the practice-based coaching components.
Also included in this document are a brief introduction to coach trainings and seminars, and the quality assurance processes: together these provide a pathway for ongoing support and improvement. Finally, a glossary of terms is included at the end of the document.
Sample Goals, Action Plan, and Handouts