Guidelines for Selecting Mentors/Instructional Coaches
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Guidelines for Selecting Mentors/Instructional Coaches

This guide can be used in the recruitment and selection of new mentors and instructional coaches. Classroom teachers who have the potential to be effective in these roles possess the following professional qualities, characteristics and skills.

Professional Qualities and Characteristics

  • Believes everyone has the capacity and desire for growth
  • Demonstrates a passion for and commitment to the future of education
  • Sets high expectations for self and others
  • Effects change, owns issues
  • Takes initiative and follows through with responsibilities
  • Is reflective and coachable
  • Seeks feedback on own practice
  • Manages time well
  • Prioritizes effectively in an unstructured environment
  • Is respected by peers and leaders for professional knowledge and skills

Effective Practice

  • Understands and translates research and theory into practical application
  • Uses multiple approaches to teaching and learning
  • Observes students closely to clarify needs; recognizes strengths and identifies resources to support learning
  • Supports and implements school/district policies and initiatives
  • Uses appropriate and current classroom applications of technology that deepen learning
  • Knows and uses state/local learning goals and professional teaching standards
  • Uses data from ongoing assessments to inform and improve instruction
  • Applies knowledge of diverse student needs to personalize and differentiate instruction and promote achievement for all
  • Knows and responds to the unique needs of students, parents and the community
  • Creates a classroom community of tolerance and acceptance
  • Holds a continuing or professional certificate and has documented, successful, contracted teaching experience
  • Regularly pursues professional development opportunities
  • Has experience presenting to and/or instructing adults

Effective Interpersonal Communication

  • Works collaboratively
  • Understands and is able to articulate the uniqueness of various school cultures
  • Communicates openly, honestly and sensitively with students, staff and parents
  • Respects confidentiality
  • Builds rapport and trusting relationships with both students and adults
  • Listens with compassion and empathy
  • Manages conflict effectively


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