Examination of Early Childhood Coaching in Paths to Quality Rating System in Indiana

2020-07-27T18:30:43Z (GMT) by Veronika Peskova
In 2008, Indiana launched a statewide child care quality rating and improvement system, called the Paths to Quality. To assist providers in improving the quality of their programs, professional development, coaching, and teacher support are provided. Yet the approach, format, and quality of coaching vary. This represents a potential disconnect between high-quality coaching, high-quality child care services, and positive child outcomes. The purpose of this study was to investigate stakeholder views on the strengths and needs of the early childhood coaches with respect to the current coaching system. To meet this goal, the focus group and dyadic interview data were collected with technical assistance administrators, early childhood coaches, and early childhood providers. Data were collected through audio recording and transcription of each data collection session. Results were analyzed by thematic analysis using the long-table approach. Five steps of familiarization, identifying, categorizing, labeling, and summarizing were used for interpretation of the results. The results showed that coaches have a passion for their profession and are very dedicated to helping support early childhood providers and teachers in their growth. On the other hand, the results also show the serious need for change in the coaching approaches and coaching model that is offered across the agency. There is a need for new complex formal training on coaching practices for both early childhood coaches and specialists and technical assistance administrators. Support for coaches needs to be established with an emphasis on an ongoing system of supports and follow up. Additionally, more specific areas of supports and its structure are presented in this study.