Collaborative Instructional Calibration

Real Collaboration on Real Work that Really Matters

The CIC (Collaborative Instructional Calibration) process connects teams in a powerful, job-embedded relevant learning experience that provides a structure for deep thinking and meaningful learning. Using the resources and protocols for coaching and calibration in concert will support you as you support your teachers' growth.

Forming Your Collaborative Team

Although this process can be done on a single campus, we encourage you to partner with a campus and administrators who serve a different group of students and teachers. Diverse teams focusing on a singular purpose provide opportunities for deep conversation, multiple perspectives, extended learning, and unlikely connections.

Find a Friend & a Facilitator

  • Partner with another campus and use the protocol, contact Ashley Helms to help find a facilitator or guide you through the protocol.


  • Sign up your campus team for one of our CIC dates. We will facilitate the schedule, pair you with a campus (or campuses) that will give you a different perspective on learning, and round up the materials.

CIC: How it Works

Each CIC Campus Visit consists of 3 basic components with specific learning targets that organize and drive the thinking during our time together.

Learning Target #1: I can use the TTESS Resources, processes and rubrics to calibration classroom instruction.

  • Campus/Teacher Preview: During this initial time spent, the principal will share the lesson preview with the team, convey concerns, communicate specific look-fors that may be specific for their campus. The principal will also focus the observation by determining which TTESS Dimensions the team should focus on while in the classroom.
  • Classroom Observation: In this 20-25 minute observation, the team will use the information from the campus preview and their TTESS Rubrics as they watch the instruction taking place in the pre-selected classroom.
  • Evidence & Rating: Upon returning to the training room, each team-member will take time to review their evidence and rate the instruction using.
  • Evidence & Rating Calibration: The team will share their evidence and ratings in order to calibrate.

Learning Target #2: I can use the TTESS Rubrics, evidence from the lesson observation, and post-conference cycle to coach classroom instruction.

  • Prep the Post-Conference: After sharing lesson observation ratings and evidence, the team will work collaboratively to help the lead administrator narrow the conversation to the area of Reinforcement/Refinement, identify powerful coaching questions, and set the tone for the post-conference fish-bowl.
  • Post Conference Fish-Bowl: The teacher will join the CIC team in the training room as everyone stands and claps as they enter. The principal or facilitator will explain the process and value of the fish-bowl, before beginning post-conference.

Learning Target #3: I can reflect on my coaching and collaborate with others to improve my practice.

  • Coach the Coach: After the fish-bowl post-conference, we will take time to reflect on the conversation, areas for duplication in subsequent conferences, and areas for coaching growth.
  • Application/Take-Aways: As a team we will add to the list of take-aways, tips, tools and resources to share with our community of leaders.

What to do before a CIC Visit

  • PICK A TEACHER: Use the Pre-conference information below to have a conference with your teacher so you will be ready to share with our team.
  • SET ASIDE SOME SPACE: We will travel in groups of 10, you want to make sure we have room to sit and talk together when we are not in the classroom.
  • SHARE YOUR CAMPUS SCHEDULE: In order to make sure we see teaching, and not transitions, please share your campus schedule with Ashley Helms.
  • REVIEW YOUR COACHING MATERIALS: It is always a good idea to go back over the material and skills that we have learned through our Leadership Coaching trainings.


Before the CIC visit is important that you pre-conference with your teacher using the TTESS Rubric. You will want to share their lesson plan, TPG/SLO and any areas of concern or focus before we visit their classroom.

This Lesson Observation Preview can help you organize your thoughts and help your teacher think about what they would like to share with the group that will be observing.

Pre-Conference Goal Setting Resources

Sample CIC Schedule

Each schedule is tailored to the specific needs of YOUR team, this sample is for a morning CIC between 2 campuses.