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Reiss, K. (2007). Leadership coaching for educators: Bringing out the best in school administrators. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Author: Reiss, K.

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With this book, the author hopes to give school leaders who are responsible for the design, development, and implementation of school reform a deep understanding of the power of coaching. Reiss's background and experience is in providing executive and leadership coaching to school leaders, and coach training and consultant services to schools and districts. The type of coaching being advocated here is a professional, peer-coaching structure, and it is made clear that the author comes from the perspective that the use of formally trained coaches is necessary. Reiss urges schools and districts to use International Coach Federation (ICF) credentialed coaches in their coaching programs. It is up to the reader to decide whether these recommendations are realistic, or necessary. In reading this book, one gets the impression that Reiss intends that coaching becomes ingrained within the professional cultures of our schools. To this end, schools and districts might find it more beneficial and cost effective to implement in-district professional development and training programs for coaches, rather than seeking outside sourcing. Regardless, the information about the benefits of coaching at every level of school leadership-teachers, coaches, administration, educational leaders, superintendents-is interesting and worthwhile.

The book is divided into three parts: Part I presents a rationale for coaching as a necessary system for school improvement, and includes many examples and vignettes; Part II defines coaching skills, knowledge, and qualifications, focusing on the 'how-to' of coaching; Part III discusses techniques, implementation, advice and processes, and presents the author's recommended five part framework for conducting coaching sessions.

This is a book about leadership coaching in schools. It advocates that we extend coaching from the classroom to the school and the district. While it does not consider the specific types of coaching that we generally focus on in the Literacy Coaching Clearinghouse, the insights into the importance of coaching at all levels of educational leadership are relevant. According to the author, school and district leaders who work with coaches experience less job burnout and turnover, primarily because of the embedded support structures of coaching offers. This would be a useful selection for a leadership book study group. While the book is intended for school administration - principals, superintendents, instructional administrators, and district level educational leaders, it would also be interesting for teacher leaders - literacy coaches, instructional coaches, reading coaches and specialists, and staff developers. Additionally, these ideas should be visited with school board members, professors of educational leadership, and members of state departments of education.

Date Added: 03/11/2008

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