(1) A mathematics and science instructional coach program is authorized, which shall consist of a coach development institute, coaching seminars, coaching activities in schools, and program evaluation.
(2) The office of the superintendent of public instruction shall develop a mathematics and science instructional coach program that includes an initial coach development experience for new coaches provided through an institute setting, coaching support seminars, and additional coach development services. The office shall draw upon the experiences of coaches in federally supported elementary literacy programs and other successful programs, research and policy briefs on adult professional development, and research that specifically addresses the instructional environments of middle, junior high, and high schools as well as the unique aspects of the fields of mathematics and science.
(3) The office of the superintendent of public instruction shall design the application process and select the program participants.
(4) Schools and school districts participating in the program shall carefully select the individuals to perform the role of mathematics or science instructional coach. Characteristics to be considered for a successful coach include:
(a) Expertise in content area;
(b) Expertise in various instructional methodologies and personalizing learning;
(c) Personal skills that include skilled listening, questioning, trust building, and problem solving;
(d) Understanding and appreciation for the differences in adult learners and student learners; and
(e) Capacity for strategic planning and quality program implementation.
(5) The role of the mathematics or science instructional coach is focused on supporting teachers as they apply knowledge, develop skills, polish techniques, and deepen their understanding of content and instructional practices. This work takes a number of forms including: Individualized professional development, department-wide and school-wide professional development, guidance in student data interpretation, and using assessment to guide instruction. Each coach shall be assigned to two schools as part of the program.
(6) Program participants have the following responsibilities:
(a) Mathematics and science coaches shall participate in the coach development institute as well as in coaching support seminars that take place throughout the school year, practice coaching activities as guided by those articulated in the role of the coach in subsection (5) of this section, collect data, and participate in program evaluation activities as requested by the institute pursuant to subsection (7) of this section.
(b) School and district administrators in districts in which the mathematics and science coaches are practicing shall participate in program evaluation activities.
(7)(a) The Washington State University social and economic sciences research center shall conduct an evaluation of the mathematics and science instructional coach program in this section. Data shall be collected through various instruments including surveys, program and activity reports, student performance measures, observations, interviews, and other processes. Findings shall include an evaluation of the coach development institute, coaching support seminars, and other coach support activities; recommendations with regard to the characteristics required of the coaches; identification of changes in teacher instruction related to coaching activities; and identification of the satisfaction level with coaching activities as experienced by classroom teachers and administrators.
(b) The Washington State University social and economic sciences research center shall report its findings to the governor, the office of the superintendent of public instruction, and the education and fiscal committees of the legislature. An interim report is due November 1, 2008. The final report is due December 1, 2009.
(8) The mathematics and science instructional coach program in this section shall be implemented to the extent funds are available for that purpose.