Wyoming’s Instructional Facilitator Program: Teachers’ Beliefs about the Impact of Coaching on Practice

Leslie S. Rush, Suzanne Young

Abstract


In 2006, the Wyoming state government allocated monies for the Department of Education to fund the work of Instructional Facilitators, or coaches, in schools across the state (Wyoming Department of Education, 2008). In Spring 2009, after the program had been in place for two years, an ex-post facto study was designed to examine the impact of the program on teacher practice. An online survey was used to collect data from classroom teachers throughout Wyoming’s public schools. Teachers answered questions about the extent of their work with Instructional Facilitators, the activities that they worked on with Instructional Facilitators, and the impact of their work with Instructional Facilitators on their practice. Results indicate that while a large number of teachers reported spending a small amount of time working with Instructional Facilitators, a small number of teachers reported spending a great deal of time working with Instructional Facilitators. Although differences by teaching level were apparent, the majority of respondents indicated they wished to continue working with an Instructional Facilitator and that Wyoming is spending its money wisely on the program. Discussion of these findings includes implications for Instructional Facilitator workloads and the need to focus their work on specific outcomes.

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