Insights from ICIC...

Illinois Council of Instructional Coaching: Fall 2020

Welcome the 2020 ICIC Board of Directors~!

Welcome the 2020 ICIC Board of Directors!

Jill Geocaris (District 207), Adam Roubitchek, (Elmhurst SD 205) Becky Mathison (Skokie), Amy Stoops (Downers Grove South), Collin Voight (Glenbard South), Judy Tyler (District 207), Billy Spicer (Winnekta 36), Megan Preis (District 15), Lauren Vaclavik (Kaneland 302), Elaine Simos (Downers Grove North) and Bridget McDonald (Elmhurst SD 205).

Member Updates from the Board....

  • 6th Annual ICIC conference has moved to a virtual conference. See details below!
  • Proposals that were already accepted will carry over to next years conference!

Update on the ICIC 2020 Virtual Conference

Due to the current situation with COVID-19, we have decided to not do an in-person Annual Conference this year. However, we are excited to inform you that we will be doing a half-day virtual workshop featuring Elena Aguilar. The format for the half-day will be 90 minutes of Elena Aguilar instructing on her new book Coaching for Equity: Conversations That Change Practice (scheduled to be released on August 11). Then, we will have 45 minutes in virtual breakout sessions followed by a 30 minute Q&A with Elena Aguilar.

We look forward to your attendance at the 6th Annual ICIC Conference virtually on Monday, October 26th from 9:00-12:00. We encourage teams to plan their own afternoon debrief to make it a full-day conference.

The cost to attend this virtual conference is only $50.00 per person and this will include the instruction, break out room and Q&A session. Please go to the website - to register!

Grab your copy and Get Ready For Our Fall Twitter Book Study on...

Coaching for Equity by Elena Aguilar

Coaching for Equity is a comprehensive guide for educators who are committed to creating equitable schools. It offers concrete strategies, a sequence of action steps, inspiring anecdotes, information, and resources. It is written for educators at all entry points―from those who are just starting to cultivate an awareness of equity, to those who have led for equity for many years. It is a book for teachers, teacher leaders, principals, superintendents, school boards, and anyone working in and with schools who aspires to fulfill a vision for equitable schools.

Instructional Coach Pia Bartolai Tells ALL on Coaching Virtually...

Can you tell us about your role and where you work?

I am an instructional coach in a K-5 elementary building in Elmhurst Community Unit School District 205. As a building coach, I work in conjunction with our Special Education Instructional Coach to support all teachers in the building with evidence-based practices to support student learning and growth.

What has been your biggest success coaching teachers during e-learning?

I think personally my greatest success during e-learning has been adapting and changing what coaching can look like during this time. It was incredibly challenging to figure out what our role could be in the midst of all the unknown. There were so many questions we had to constantly navigate: How could we be supportive but not overwhelming? Would teachers be willing to still work with us? If so, what could that look like in a remote setting? We had to be flexible. There was no playbook for emergency remote learning, and there definitely was not a playbook for coaching during a global pandemic. We needed to practice what we preach -- be willing to try things and possibly fail. It was very scary to continue putting myself out there when many teachers were just trying to keep their head above water. But I think many of them saw that I was right there next to them, treading water with them.

What has been your biggest challenge with coaching teachers during e-learning?

The transition to e-learning turned a very personal profession, teaching, into what could feel like a very cold and impersonal one. Same thing for coaching. I truly believe one of the most important skills of a coach is emotional intelligence, but speaking to people through technology removes a lot of the cues we have learned to rely on. Trying to read the room, read body language, figure out what people are thinking when they are on a computer, sometimes with the microphone and video muted, was incredibly challenging.

After reflecting on this school year is there anything you have learned through it and would you do anything differently next year?

I learned so much through this experience and I also have so many questions that I am using for reflection in order to continue improving my practice, whether we are teaching in-person, hybrid, or remotely. When I narrow it down to one main priority I think about our role as coaches. In Elmhurst we have been doing a lot of learning around student-centered coaching; coaching based on student outcomes. Our reality in the spring was that we were so focused on what to teach and how to deliver that information to students and parents (what template, tech tool, or system would we use) that we never had the chance to really reflect on student outcomes. It came with the territory of transitioning to e-learning overnight and the constant unknown of the spring. I still feel like we are living in a bit of that unknown, but as a coach, I want to support teachers in that work. How might that look in a remote environment? How do we assess student learning when our students may not be directly in front of us? How do we provide personalized learning experiences in a learning environment filled with so many unknowns? And how do we manage all that without burning out teachers, students, and their families?

About Us

The Illinois Council of Instructional Coaching is a group collective of coaches and administrators, from EC to College, throughout the state. We are dedicated to building the art of coaching to benefit teachers and students of all ages.
We began getting together during the 2014-2015 school year and look forward to further collaboration to increase the efficacy of the coaching process for all teachers and administrators.

To SUPPORT instructional coaches and ADVANCE instructional coaching

We are a community of instructional coaches who value collaboration, best practices, professionalism, research, and networking in order to enhance teaching and learning in the classroom through instructional coaching.

Coaching Standards

We are in the process of developing Instructional Coaching standards.
You can find our draft here.

We would love your feedback.
Coaching Standards Feedback Form