9 edtech coaching insights for the new school year

Edtech coaches hope to provide deeper levels of coaching in the new school year
By: | August 14, 2020
With online learning continuing, edtech coaches intend to help teachers create remote lessons that keep students engaged. (GettyImages/MEDITERRANEAN)GettyImages

Teachers and administrators are truly realizing the value of edtech coaches since COVID closures forced schools to enhance online learning quickly, a new survey finds.

Coaches were key in providing professional development as teachers made the transition from in-person to remote instruction this spring, according to “The Valuable Role of Edtech Coaches during the COVID-19 Pandemic,” from Digital Promise.

The coaches surveyed said they spent more time with teachers—both during and after school—helping educators get comfortable with new instructional technology.

With the new school year beginning, coaches said they feel adequately prepared to continue providing PD but they are less confident about helping teachers differentiate instruction for diverse learners, the survey found.

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Also, edtech coaches said they hope to provide deeper levels of coaching—such as by modeling or co-creating lessons with teachers—than they have offered in the past.

“Instructional technology coaches were invaluable as thought partners and problem-solvers for teachers who were supporting student learning at home,” said Karen Cator, president and CEO of Digital Promise.

Edtech coaches’ expectations

With online learning continuing in just about every district, the survey also examined the number of edtech coaches who feel prepared to accomplish the various online learning tasks:

  • Provide digital PD sessions for groups of teachers: 83%
  • Support teacher collaboration with each other: 72%
  • Communicate teachers’ online instruction challenges to district personnel: 68%
  • Help teachers create lessons and activities that engage students: 66%
  • Provide deep coaching digitally: 55%
  • Help teachers diferentiate to meet the needs of diverse learners: 51%
  • Support non-teaching staff, such as counselors and paraprofessionals: 48%

Finally, edtech coaches said they felt least confident about helping teachers provide social-emotional support to students remotely and about assisting families in making home environments more conducive to online learning.



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