Coaching is an important feature of the PBL system. It helps a school team to build their capacity to effectively implement and sustain PBL.
Coaches work with teams, gather information and offer feedback and support based upon the PBL problem solving process. They also encourage teams to become self-analytical by asking questions to promote professional reflection.
What coaching can provide
- effective professional learning strategies
- detailed knowledge of the PBL problem solving process and PBL continuum
- advice on adapting systems and practices to the local context to improve sustainability
- more effective PBL implementation.
Internal and external coaches
It is recommended that schools adopt an 'internal' coach for capacity building and sustainability. Internal coaches are selected from within existing school personnel such as school counsellors, Learning and support teachers (LaST), executives or teachers. Schools can also consider adopting a model that uses an 'external' coach. External coaches usually come from the network of schools who have experience and expertise in the PBL process.
Support with coaches
Local Educational Services PBL teams can provide information and support to schools who wish to pursue a coaching model that meets the needs of their local context.
Skills needed by external coaches
- knowledge of the PBL process (data, systems and practices across a three-tiered continuum)
- knowledge of PBL assessment tools
- capacity to work with multiple schools
- knowledge of data based decision making and function-based behaviour interventions
- mentoring and coaching skills
- experience supporting team problem solving
- knowledge of behavioural and learning support practices
- understanding of how schools work
- strong interpersonal skills.