I recently had the pleasure of providing coaching skills training for the staff at the Learning Center at Flint Hill School in Oakton, VA. Flint Hill is an independent K-12 day school in the heart of Fairfax County, VA, known for both academic excellence and outstanding support for students with learning differences. Over the years, I have had the opportunity to coach many Flint Hill students in a private setting, so I was thrilled at the opportunity to provide coaching skills training to those who work directly with the students on a daily basis.
On the first day of training, I was met with enthusiasm, curiosity and snacks – 3 important components of a great training! All of the learning specialists were eager to learn and had done their course reading (Empowering Youth with ADHD and Co-Active Coaching) prior to the start of class, which enriched our conversations and allowed me to jump into the material without concern about their ability to understand the concept of coaching.
The training combined “front loading” of information on coaching for students with ADHD/EF/LD mixed with discussion of actual case studies from the lower, middle and upper school levels and we used coaching demonstrations to expand the learning. Each participant brought a unique perspective from their targeted grade levels, sharing how they supported students on a daily basis, centered on the needs of the individual. The JST Coaching Personal Coaching Agreement (PCA) was a good fit for the learning specialists and by the end of the training they had ideas for integrating the PCA into their current plan. Very exciting!
I am grateful for the opportunity to work with Susan Biggs, M.Ed, Learning Center Director, and her team of learning specialists. Their expertise in supporting students with learning differences combined with their dedication and desire to guide students toward success was an inspiration. Adding coaching to their educational toolboxes provides an opportunity to increase their effectiveness through the use of coaching language and skills to promote independence, self-advocacy, greater self-esteem and self-awareness in their students. Kudos to Flint Hill School for taking a big step forward in service of their students!