• Examining the Decision Making Process of a Literacy Coach for Literacy Implementation in a Secondary School Setting

      Wilson, Sandra J.
      The purpose of this study was to understand the role and responsibilities in the decision making strategies and actions of a literacy coach while implementing literacy practices within secondary school setting. The influence of these decisions upon instructional practice within the school setting through professional development was also explored. The qualitative study utilized a case study theory methodology in the process of data collection and analysis. Purposeful sampling was used to select four secondary schools defined as post-primary grade, including middle school that was currently implementing a coaching model with active literacy coaches. Data was gathered through on-site, semi-structured one-on-one interviews conducted in the school setting where the literacy coach and corresponding teacher worked. Teachers and coaches responded to a series of four questions that explored the coach’s roles and responsibilities impacting student learning at the school level, literacy coaching decisions made focusing on literacy practices at the school setting, how decisions are enacted, and the influence decisions had on school staff’s instructional practices regarding whether they impeded or enabled the practices. Field observations were conducted and examination of school demographic and achievement data were reviewed for each site. As a result of the study, the researcher developed ten themes from the secondary school settings: data collection and analysis is utilized to inform instruction, training provided by coaches gives teachers new knowledge to help struggling readers, coaching techniques enhance teacher responsiveness and student engagement, principal support provides a positive coaching environment, collaborative atmosphere accelerates coaching ability to develop and improve literacy practices, trust and relationships with coach building foundation for professional growth, district level decisions impact schools, communication maintains consistency for all stakeholders, coaching decisions enable purposeful instructional practices, coaching decisions may impede instructional practices in the school setting.