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Coach It Further

Coach It Further
Using the Art of Coaching to Improve School Leadership

First Edition

Foreword by Coach Ron Mulson

September 2018 | 224 pages | Corwin

Practical strategies for building coach-leader relationships


Leadership is complex work. High quality leadership coaching is one of the most effective methods of professional development for leaders. Coach It Further uses a narrative format to illustrate the important aspects of leadership that leaders and coaches can work on together to achieve their shared goals. It includes:

  • Authentic stories from leaders and students
  • The Collaborative Leadership Growth Cycle, which provides leaders with a starting point and specific steps to take to reach their goals
  • Strategies for the four priorities research shows school leaders are most concerned about: collective efficacy, communication, student and family engagement, and political climate
  • Reflection questions for leadership coaches to use with their leader-coaches  

Whether you are a seasoned coach, a leader looking to be coached, or a leader looking for guidance on how to coach burgeoning leaders among your staff, this book will build your confidence and provide you with valuable insights and strategies. 

Watch Peter's interview with WNYT-NBC as he discusses Coach It Further.


Offers a model of how educators can engage in the art of leadership coaching. School administrators will connect to the realistic, varied, and detailed examples illustrating the complexities of leadership. Here you will find thoughtful insights and practical suggestions for improving the quality of leadership coaching in your practice.

–Jenni Donohoo, Best-selling author and Professional Learning Facilitator


A must-read for school leaders and leadership coaches. You will connect to the real struggles of a principal learning to be coached. This book is chock-full of research, tips, and examples to help you improve your self-efficacy as a leader.

–Jessica Johnson, School Leader

Co-Author of The Coach Approach to School Leadership and Breaking Out of Isolation

Why We Need Coaches in Educational Leadership

Stories Matter

Audience for This Book

The Self-Efficacy of Leadership

Leadership Shouldn’t Be a Solitary Pursuit

Coach’s Corner: Virtual Coaching

Special Features

About the Author
Chapter 1: Beginning a Coaching Relationship
What to Do Versus What Not to Do

Coach’s Corner: Strategies for Coaching Assistant Principals

Am I In Over My Head?

Coach’s Corner: Strategies for Addressing Insecurities

Coach’s Corner: Leadership PLCs on Voxer

It’s Time for a Coach

Chapter 2: Gavin “Accepts” Coaching
Coaching Credibility

Introducing Leadership Coach Michelle Hebert

Coach’s Corner: Credibility Matters

Of Course I Want to Be Coached!

Coach’s Corner: The Preengagement Survey

Let Go of Coaching Myths

Coach’s Corner: Sample Questions for Coaches to Ask Leaders

Chapter 3: Fostering a Supportive School Climate
Interact With Students and Staff at the Beginning of Each Day

Emphasize the Positive

Coach’s Corner: Student Focus Groups

Be Transparent About the Coaching

Invite Everyone to Work Toward the Mission

Coach’s Corner: Improving the Culture of the School

Embrace Vulnerability

Believe in Your Own Capability

Coach’s Corner: Self-Efficacy Review

Improve the Climate First, Then the Culture

Coach’s Corner: Fostering an Inclusive School Climate

Coach’s Corner: Coaching and School Climate

Coach’s Corner: Where Do You Want to Start?

Where Should Gavin Start?

Coach’s Corner: Ways to Strengthen a Collaborative Culture

Chapter 4: Gavin Becomes More OPEN to Coaching
What It Means to Be More OPEN to Coaching

Coach’s Corner: Set Ground Rules

Coach’s Corner: Walk-Throughs

Whose Agenda Is This?

Coach’s Corner: Understand Your Coachee’s Needs

Gavin Seeks Advice From a Friend

Chapter 5: Gavin Establishes His Goal
Why Does Collective Efficacy Still Matter?

Coach’s Corner: Understand the Research You Promote

Coach’s Corner: Raise Self-Efficacy

Coach’s Corner: Assess Your Own Style of Coaching

Four Priorities of Leadership

Chapter 6: A Survey That Inspires Collaboration
The Survey That Inspired It All

Coach’s Corner: Collaborative Leadership Team (CLT)

The Morning After

Coach’s Corner: Create a Collaborative Leadership Team (CLT)

Collaborative Leadership Team

Coach’s Corner: Strategies to Overcome the Challenges of Distance

Surface to Deep

Chapter 7: Priority I—Collective Efficacy
How Can Gavin Maximize His Time?

Coach’s Corner: Do What You Love

Coach’s Corner: Beware of Educational Jargon

Coach’s Corner: Strategies to Increase Trust in Schools

Coach’s Corner: Coaching Your Assistant Principals

Chapter 8: Priority II—Communication
Enabling Conditions

Coach’s Corner: Assess Your Communication Practices

Coaching Communication

Coach’s Corner: Establish Communication Frequency

Complications of Communication

Communication With Assistant Principals

Communication With Staff

Coach’s Corner: Communication Mistakes to Avoid

Coach’s Corner: Feedback Triggers to Watch Out For

Coaching Challenging Conversations

Coach’s Corner: Ways to Challenge in Conversations

Chapter 9: Priority III—Student and Community Engagement
Collaborative Leadership Team Explores Family Engagement

Coach’s Corner: Encourage Coachees to Assess Family Focus

The Collaborative Leadership Team Realizes All Doesn’t Mean All

Working With Outside Organizations

Coach’s Corner: Encourage Community Engagement

What Should Community Engagement Look Like?

Michelle’s Community Engagement Coaching Conversation

Chapter 10: Priority IV—The Political Climate
Negative Rhetoric Affects Us Too

Hattie’s Politics of Distraction

Coach’s Corner: Beware of the Politics of Distraction

The Collaborative Leadership Team Gets Distracted

Epilogue: Where Does Gavin Go From Here?
Understanding Priorities

Four Priorities


Dr. Peter DeWitt writes from the perspective of someone who has had an exceptionally varied combination of life experiences; the struggling student, the honors student, the teacher in both urban and rural educational settings, the administrator, the scholar, and the advocate for those in need of support. He is a rare combination of theorist and pragmatist and his insights on leadership and coaching are both thought-provoking and useful.  They also may help many educators get closer to that ever-elusive good night’s sleep.

Ron Mulson
Hudson Valley Community College

In this well-timed book, Peter DeWitt uses evidence-based stories to illustrate how educators can engage in the art of leadership coaching. School administrators will make multiple connections to the realistic, varied, and detailed examples DeWitt uses to illustrate the complexities of leadership. If you’re looking to improve the quality of leadership coaching in schools and districts, you’ll find thoughtful insights and practical suggestions contained throughout. 

Jenni Donohoo
Best-selling author and Professional Learning Facilitator

Coach It Further is a must-read for school leaders and leadership coaches. This is not your typical professional learning book. I promise you will enjoy reading as you follow the scenario of a principal learning to be coached. You will also make connections with the real struggles of leadership and coaching. This book is chock full of research, tips ,and examples to help you build your self-efficacy as a leader and lead your school to build collective efficacy.

Jessica Johnson
school leader and author

Peter DeWitt has a credible authenticity that strikes a chord of recognition with teachers and principals. In Coach It Further he further develops the critical factor of collective efficacy and shows how a skilled coach can help a principal break a school cultural impasse and move a struggling school forward. This excellent book has a readability quality that will engage all readers.

Neil MacNeill, Head Master Ellenbrook Independent Primary School Western Australia
Neil MacNeill, Head Master Ellenbrook Independent Primary School Western Australia
Key features

Collaborative Leadership

School Climate

Leadership Coaching

Special Feature: Hattie’s research

Special Feature: Early Warning System

Special Feature: Coaching cycle

6 Influences That Matter Most

· Instructional leadership

· Assessment capable learners

· Feedback

· Collective efficacy

· Family engagement

· Professional development

Essential elements of school climate

· Inclusive Curriculum

· Images that represent students

· School board policies

· Student codes of conduct

· Understanding minoritized populations

· Common language


5 Priorities for Leaders


· Community Engagement

· Communication

· Collective Efficacy

· Politics of Distraction

· Time management


Focus on collaboration using structures leaders have in place (i.e. faculty meetings, teacher observations, etc.)

Focus on fostering a school climate that increases self-efficacy & collective efficacy

Focus on building the self-efficacy of leaders through leadership coaching

Meet, Model, Motivate

Leadership Growth Cycle

· They choose an area of growth

How to implement collaborative leadership through goal setting

Focus on leadership styles

· Negotiator

· Regulator

· Bystander

· Collaborator



Who should read? District, building leaders, teacher leaders, instructional coaches

Who should read? District, building leaders, teachers, school psychologists, school counselors

Who should read: Potential leaders. New leaders. Any leader who wants to grow

Select a Purchasing Option

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ISBN: 9781506399485

ISBN: 9781506399492

This title is also available on SAGE Knowledge, the ultimate social sciences online library. If your library doesn’t have access, ask your librarian to start a trial.