Making Connections: Strategic Plan, Whole Child, Instructional Coaching and Equity

Multiple hands of different ethnicities join in the center and are clasped

The following is shared by the Teaching & Learning team:

When we say “Whole Child,” what do we mean?
A Whole Child approach means every student has the right to be safe, healthy, supported, engaged and challenged as defined by the ASCD Whole Child Tenets. At the Federal level, a Whole Child approach became the expectation when the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) went into effect in 2016 and evolved State and District data reporting expectations beyond traditional academics as part of a “well-rounded education.”

At the State level, OSPI uses a multi-metric approach with ESSA and also grounds the Healthy Schools Washington Program in the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) Model developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and ASCD, supporting communities with taking a Whole Child approach to scale.

What does it look like when Instructional Coaching integrates a Whole Child approach?
One might venture to say Coaching supports the “Whole Teacher” or “Whole Educator.”

The foundation of Instructional Coaching involves collaboration with teacher colleagues in direct service of students. Many of the Whole Child Tenets speak directly to the work Instructional Coaches (ICs) do in Olympia.

Some IC services include: daily partnership to continue implementing our Danielson Instructional Framework, mentoring new teachers through the BEST (Beginning Educator Support Team) Services Instructional Coaching, traditional coaching cycle; co-planning, co-teaching; professional development offerings; debriefing discussions; single classroom observations; and general thought partnership.

Student success is at the forefront of partnership and collaboration. And, with the restructure of the Teaching & Learning (T&L) Team in support of students, educators and families through the lens of Recovery, each Instructional Coach is charged with integration of a Whole Child and Whole Educator approach within daily work.

Whole Child + Instructional Coaching = Equity Work
Elena Aguilar is often referred to as a “Coach of Coaches” because of her expertise in Instructional Coaching and the opportunity for everyone – including ICs – to continue growing. In Coaching for Equity: Conversations that Change Practice (2020), Aguilar stated “Remember: It’s not your fault that things are the way they are, but it is your responsibility to do something about them.”

During his keynote at the launch of the school year, Superintendent Patrick Murphy charged all of us to be leaders for equity in support of student success as we partner in efforts for Student Outcome #4 of our Strategic Plan/District Improvement Plan (DIP)

The application of the Whole Child approach, the launch of Instructional Coaching, and the priorities outlined by the OSD Strategic Plan are aligned with one goal in mind: Providing OSD students with the most holistically supportive education possible.

Supervision of Instructional Coaching Services
Supervision of Instructional Coaching Services falls under Cherlyn Pijanowski, senior director of Teaching & Learning (T&L) who reports to Chief Academic Officer (CAO) Hannah Gbenro. Some T&L ICs are site-based, while others serve multiple sites, as noted in this September blog post.

Related Resources

  1. Register for the Danielson Instructional Framework Office Hours.
  2. Background information on our Strategic Plan/District Improvement Plan (DIP)