Tips for Supporting Teachers at Multiple School Sites

Being a district teacher leader (instructional coach, PD coordinator, subject area specialist, etc.) means you are supporting teachers at multiple school sites instead of staying at one single school. This can be logistically challenging in addition to meeting the various expectations of each building you support.

If you are moving from a school to district coach position, read this previous blog post first to gain insight on similarities and differences in roles as well as tips for the transition. The post below will outline tips for once you begin supporting teachers at multiple building sites.

Maintain Relationships

It can take longer to build relationships with the teachers you will support because you will not see them everyday. Spend a significant amount of time being out and about at each school site, meeting teachers (even if they are not on your support roster). Being a familiar face on campus to both staff and students, allows trust and interest in working together to blossom.

Before jumping into working together, make sure you spend time getting to know the teachers in terms of their goals and vision for their career. This information is helpful in designing your strategy to help them become more successful – knowing where they want to go and ultimately what they would like to do with their degree/certification. It also can reveal the root of the obstacles teachers are facing and make problem solving much more efficient. Check out this resource that may be helpful in gathering information about your staff.

Once working with teachers, continue to relate even when not on campus. Making your self available to help and showcasing your human side, will allow relationships with teachers to continue to grow even when not face-to-face. Using communication tools like Voxer or Marco Polo are helpful to stay in touch with teachers when not on site.

Personalize Tasks

Getting organized by site is the ultimate strategy to ensure your support remains effective for multiple sites. Having digital or physical folders per site, and then again by teacher on your support roster helps keep information and strategy clear.

Each teacher will require a different amount or type of support based on their area of need. Therefore, designing a schedule and implementing a coaching cycle will not look even among teachers on your support roster. Some teachers will need more intense support and more often. Other teachers will just need a quick touch point and not engage in a full coaching cycle (pre-observation, observation, post-observation).

Once you are organized, determining which teacher needs what and how you can provide the support is next. Options include: co-plan, co-teach, lesson plan feedback, lesson demo, data analysis, observation, debrief, peer learning walk, Q/A office hours, etc. It is suggested to make these support options known and available to teachers- a coaching menu like this one is a common way to do that.

Ongoing Accountability

It is essential to build partnerships with the administrators in each building. Knowing their goals for the school will help formulate your game plan for supporting the growth of teachers. Getting on the same page for what coaching is and what it will look like at their school site ensures alignment between the partnership goal and the daily tasks. This will decrease frustration and increase clarity.

Meeting on a cyclical basis with administrators from each site will ensure the partnership remains a positive experience for all involved. Things to discuss include how coaching is going, progress of teacher competence and student achievement, as well as working through any hiccups occurring logistically.

Ongoing accountability keeps relationships strong and coaching tasks aligned. Catching issues quickly and realigning expectations ensure everyone is on the same page and all efforts are producing desires results.

Next Steps

You can be an effective coach supporting teachers at multiple school sites  if you focus on maintaining relationships, personalizing tasks, and implementing ongoing accountability measures.

If you are need of resources to help you become an even stronger coach, browse these printable and digital options. Check out my instructional coaching must-haves here.





How can you support teachers better at multiple school sites?

About the author, Gretchen

I am a teacher trainer and coach. Working elbow to elbow with teachers and teacher leaders to ensure instructional proficiency and student achievement soar lights me up. We have a real need in our nation for strong educators to remain in the field. My blog, book, podcast, courses and instructional materials are geared towards empowering teachers (and those that lead them) to receive the support needed to grow and thrive today, tomorrow and always.