Early Education Leaders, an Institute at UMass Boston

provides the leadership development opportunities and infrastructure that early educators need to support thriving children and families.

StrongStart Professional Development Centers Leadership Coaching Institute successfully launches


Congratulations to the participants of our inaugural StrongStart Coaching Institute!

Created and facilitated by the StrongStart Coaching Committee, this training was offered to all coaches, who work with early childhood leaders and educators through the StrongStart PDCs. The training was developed to support coaches in the implementation of the PDC coaching model within all early education programs in Massachusetts. The strengths-based institute was delivered in five sessions, with equity and continuous quality improvement at the center of all learning and training. 

Training sessions included mindfulness exercises as well as hands-on practice with peers in using coaching protocols and tools described in the PDC Leadership Coaching Guide, which was developed for the PDC Leadership Coaching Institute. Because relationship building is integral to the success of coaching, training intentionally focused on building strong partnerships with program leaders and educators. The coaches pictured below were guided through real coaching situations and given time to look deeply at how they would implement the strategies they were learning. The coaches were also trained in the use of SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Timely) goals and data collection. To close out the training there was a discussion about self-care and how to embed that into daily practice. Compassion fatigue and strategies that can be used to address this were also a focus of the final session.

Ongoing support for coaches will be provided by regional PDC lead coaches and the statewide coaching manager. These meetings will include regular regional meetings with the regional lead coach and statewide follow up sessions with the statewide coaching manager and lead coaches. These meetings and sessions will emphasize the use of continuous quality improvement methods, reflective practice, continued support with the online data system, additional professional development opportunities, and peer support for continued implementation of the PDC Leadership Coaching model. 

The StrongStart PDC Leadership Coaching Institute and the PDC Leadership Coaching Guide were collaboratively developed by PDC Lead Coaches, the StrongStart Statewide Coaching Manager, one of the Western MA PDC Coordinators, and the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care. 

Based on the feedback from coaches, below, a follow up training session will be offered to current and new coaches before the end of the fiscal year.

  • “I so appreciated the panel questions and including the data at the beginning. I think the aggregate data is important for all of us to reflect on.”
  • “The Institute made me much more self-assured about what we are doing and the impact it is having on the profession.”
  • “These sessions are so enlightening. Excellent!”
  • “This was incredibly helpful and intentionally facilitated. Thank you!”
  • “It was well put together. I had deep thoughts and conversations. The material was just right. Thank you once again.”
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