Coaching and Mentoring

Code of Ethics

Professional Coaching

Coaching: Professional Coaching is partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential (ICF, 2014). This process involves the client and the sponsor who is soliciting the service on behalf of him or herself or a third party. Coaches use professionalism and building trusting relationships with clients to support them through various creative processes for success.

Instructional Coaching

Instructional coaches partner with teachers to help them incorporate research-based instructional practices into their teaching (Knight, 2008, p.31). Teacher-based coaching creates a partnership with teachers and influences best practices though the establishment of performance goals such as self-reflection, building trust through effective implementation and planning, and problem solving.

International Coach Federation STandards

Professional Coaches operate under a strict set of standards developed by the International Coach Federation. Some example of these are as follows:

Professional Conduct at Large,

#4) I will, at all times, strive to recognize personal issues that may impair, conflict or interfere with my coaching performance or my professional coaching relationships. Whenever the facts and circumstances necessitate, I will promptly seek professional assistance and determine the action to be taken, including whether it is appropriate to suspend or terminate my coaching relationship(s).

Professional Conduct with Clients

#19) I will respect the client's right to terminate the coaching relationship at any point during the process, subject to the provisions of the agreement or contract. I will be alert to indications that the client is no longer benefiting from our coaching relationship.


#22) I will maintain the strictest levels of confidentiality with all client and sponsor information. I will have a clear agreement or contract before releasing information to another person, unless required by law.

Conflicts of Interest.

#9) I will seek to avoid conflicts of interest and potential conflicts of interest and openly disclose any such conflicts. I will offer to remove myself when such a conflict arises.

Instructional Coaching Principles

Instructional Coaches also rely on ethical guidelines for facilitating trust and promoting effective implementation strategies with educators through some of the following principles:

Teachers Are Equal Partners with Coaches

Instructional coaches view teachers as their equals (Knight, 2008, p.32). Therefore, similar to the IFC standards above, they value the input of the teacher and uphold the client’s needs over personal opinions; thereby maintaining a valuable relationship of trust and mutual respect. Instructional coaches vow to act professionally and use facts when making important educational decisions that affect faculty, students, and staff.

Choice: Teachers Should Have Choice Regarding What and How They Learn

In a partnership, one individual does not make decisions for another (Knight, 2008, p. 32). Teachers have an entry and exit to the agreement if they do not believe the IC is working their best interest. Instructional coaches cannot ethically influence the educator with personal opinions but instead must seek professional advice and resources at all times including feedback from educators (client).

Voice: Professional Learning Should Empower and Respect the Voices of Teachers

Indeed, a primary benefit of a partnership is that each individual

has access to many perspectives rather than the one perspective of

a leader (Knight, 2008,p. 32). Coaches shall remain honest and use integrity to uphold the highest standards of professionalism by not breaching the trustful client/ coach relationship.

Dialogue: Professional Learning Should Enable Authentic Dialogue

IC's avoid manipulation, engage participants in conversation about content, and think and learn with participants. Instructional coaches must maintain equal status with the educator when discussing various strategies for student outcomes for effective implementation.

Relationship of Ethics and Principles for Professional and Instructional Coaches

The relation of IFC standards to teacher based coaching is that ethical guidelines are necessary for building successful relationships with clients, both in the business or educational realm. For every ethical code of behavior listed under the IFC, there is also a similar correlating rule or principle for Teacher Based Coaching demonstrating the rights, roles, and responsibilities for both the client and or educator. Instructors and clients have the right to be treated fairly and respected as they are the sole purpose for guidance. Additionally, instructional and professional business coaches must allow sponsors and teachers confidentially through the creation of trustful relationships with mutual respect, always choosing an ethical manner of professionalism to maintain integrity and effectiveness.


International Coach Federation (2014) Retrieved March 1, 2014 from ( ItemNumber=854&navItemNumber=634

Knight, J. (2008). Coaching: Approaches and perspectives. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Miller, S. (2014) University of Phoenix.