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  • Writer's pictureDr. Weston Johnson

Coaching and Intervening Through a Pandemic

Our districts worked hard this year to make necessary health and safety adjustments while still delivering quality instruction to our students. For some that meant reassigning instructional coaches and/or ADSIS teachers to the classroom. Meeting those needs in the classroom is always essential ensure that each student has access to quality core instruction.

A critical component to a successful instructional and/or behavior coach is a solid working partnership with the coach's principal. This ensures that the coach is supporting the specific spots that the principal needs. This year that was especially true to meet system needs.

In spite of it all, our students received interventions including those spent with special education dollars in a preventative manner. ADSIS provides Tier 2 interventions and is funded through state special education funds and CEIS (Coordinated Early Intervening Services) provides Tier 3 interventions and is funded through federal special education funds.

Students Served this year:

  • 184 Students Served in ADSIS

  • 71 Students Serviced in CEIS

​As the Behavioral Coach at Cannon Falls Elementary, I have had the opportunity to work with students, teachers, and staff to help in creating an environment that nurtures not only a students academic needs, but also their social emotional needs. In this role, I have provided whole class interventions in the form of Morning Meetings as well as individual coaching to focus on specific behaviors. Being in the classroom and providing classwide interventions has been very rewarding and a great opportunity to collaborate with classroom teachers and share ideas. I have appreciated the willingness of teachers to allow me to be a part of their lessons as well as share ideas. This year I have worked closely with teachers to identify and support students that need additional support to be successful in the classroom--sometimes that looks like a quick movement break and other times we are doing one-on-one lessons that focus on specific areas that may be challenging. I have worked collaboratively with classroom teachers to develop behavioral interventions and provide students with coping skills. In addition to this, we have worked together to monitor growth and make modifications when necessary. Cannon Falls Elementary has a strong Special Education team and I appreciate their willingness to share ideas and interventions that have been proven effective in the past. I have worked closely with the special education team to learn and implement common language and lessons, making it easier to support one another as well as students. The building principal, Jennifer Chappuis, has been extremely supportive of this position and is quick to offer ideas and help when needed. I continue to learn new things everyday and love the excitement and challenges offered by this position! ​​
This 20-21 school year working as an Instructional Coach with the great teachers of ZM has been incredible! Despite all the challenges we faced with Covid, we were able to be in person all year at the Primary and Elementary levels. My role allows me to help teachers with Language Arts and Math instruction and finding new materials. Thank you for allowing me to step in and help in many ways this school year. I feel honored to work with such a great group of teachers and paras in the district and look forward to what next year will bring! - Suzanne Griffin
Shout out to Cheryl Dahl for doing such an amazing job as a first year coach for K-W! She used the relationships she had with staff and students to navigate through a challenging year. We are so lucky to have her at K-W. - Laura McAnally
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