Innovation & Learning Coach

The IDEA drivers INSPIRE, DESIGN, EMPOWER and AMPLIFY, are at the core of all ALP work, including the domains for our coaching competencies.

IDEA is a talent development process and tool that facilitates learner growth by integrating voice and choice for job-embedded professional learning. Advanced Learning Partnerships developed this tool  based on validated competency models developed across several school districts with focus group participation from over 100 coaches.

IDEA draws on common underlying competencies that are critical to effectively performing the role of a coach who is charged with integrating and spreading innovation, enhancing and deepening learning for teachers and students, and building trusting and productive coaching relationships with teachers and school leaders. The underlying competency model (see figure below) for IDEA provides coaches with corresponding proficiency levels and a common language to collaborate with colleagues, define goals, and reflect on practice and progress.

IDEA stands for INSPIRE, DESIGN, EMPOWER, and AMPLIFY. Each pillar represents a domain of competencies that are described in more detail below.


INSPIRE: Vision & Collaboration

Competencies in the INSPIRE domain involve initiating relationships, building shared vision, and advocating for professional learning with various stakeholders (e.g., teachers, students, principals, district leaders, etc.). In this competency domain the coach is actively listening, advocating values for teaching and learning, and finding a common ground to lay a solid foundation for professional learning at the classroom, school, and/or district level. The INSPIRE competencies include:

  • Relationships
  • Collaborative Change Planning
  • Advocating for Professional Learning

DESIGN: For Learners by Learners

DESIGN competencies involve exploring new instructional innovation in technology and pedagogically sound learning models. Coaches also design professional learning sessions, coaching tools, and plans to integrate a scope of professional learning at a given school. They support educators’ professional learning and development needs by integrating and aligning innovative educational technology with available resources and instructional priorities. The DESIGN competencies include:

  • Exploring Innovation
  • Professional Learning Plan
  • Instructional Technology Resources

EMPOWER: Innovative Educators

Competencies in the EMPOWER domain include implementing professional learning initiatives centered on sound pedagogical practice. Coaches model engaging, relevant, and intentional technology when facilitating professional learning to support individuals and groups with diverse learning needs and of varying sizes (e.g., one-on-one coaching to small and large group PD training). They implement coaching cycles to provide thoughtful reflection; support educators in goals to advance practice; and develop a trusting and positive relationship with educators. EMPOWER competencies include:

  • Professional Learning Implementation
  • Coaching

AMPLIFY: Community Capacity

AMPLIFY competencies entail building capacity in fellow team members and school communities (teachers, students, principals, coaches, leaders) so that others can then share, model, and spread best practices across the district and beyond. They coordinate coaching and professional learning sessions, activities, and technology resources across multiple schools and dozens of teachers. Coaches craft important communication regarding PL events, resources and initiatives to disseminate online or in person.   AMPLIFY competencies include:

  • Professional Network
  • Communication
  • Coordination

Sample Competency (Instructional Technology Resources) with Proficiency Levels:  You may share this post with colleagues, but you may not change it in any way or use it commercially.



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