Sammie Wiles (Head of Department), Ashcroft High School

Coaching System Makes HoD’s Life Easier & Dramatically Improves NQT within 3 weeks!


The coaching’s also helped me in the sense that I was going through some personal demons myself, having some counselling. And through that, I actually started to coach myself on the way to my counselling! So when I got there, it was almost, I’d already done all the work ready for it. So in the end, I didn’t need to have that counselling session, because Annie’s course was amazing, as we all know!

And so in relation to how it’s helped me develop as a person – it’s built my confidence to deal with certain situations. So having those ‘awkward’ conversations, being able to target my students and get more out of them – I’m getting such a higher level and calibre of answers from my students, so it has really, really helped in my teaching aspects.

It’s allowed me to coach others, solve their own problems.

So I’m not having teachers running into me anymore, going, “You need to come and deal with this student, they’re being a nightmare!”

And it’s really helped me in that sense, that I’m not feeling all this pressure. It’s lifted a lot of pressure. It’s helped with my time management skills. And it’s almost given me quite a ‘calming’ effect.

How I have used it in my role even more is I’ve actually used it with an NQT. And I’ve had amazing results with this NQT. …I’m her mentor – and I was doing mentoring – and I thought, “Do you know what? This is a problem that I think can be solved through coaching.” So rather than me giving her all the solutions, I actually started coaching her around it. And within three weeks we saw a dramatic improvement in her behaviour management of her Key Stage 3 lessons. And she’s noticed a change in herself. So it was a really positive outcome.

I’ve done it with my year 11 house group students in their exams. I’ve got some quite, um, vulnerable students that also need a lot of support, and they actually produced fantastic revision plans. It was absolutely superb. And rather than going, I’m going to do an hour revision here. They were doing 20 minutes skill-based activity. And they’ve seen an improvement in their results as well. So it’s helped in that sense, with them progressing in their learning.

It’s also helped in my new role as, giving feedback to other experienced members of staff. So, as I said, I’ve not been teaching very long. So when I was going in and someone who’s been teaching 10 years and I’m having to give them feedback, sometimes it can come across to them as being, “What do you know that’s different to me?”

And I totally understand that from their point of view, but it’s able to, it’s enabled me to give much more positive feedback in a very quick and efficient manner, which is nice. And it’s allowed me to build relationships that I didn’t quite have before.

It’s allowed them to take responsibility of their own development.

It’s allowed us to work as a team – we’re much more efficient.

And it’s also allowed me to delegate work – because I can be a bit, “I want it my way!” Or I get a bit upset because I’m like, “I don’t understand how you’ve done it!”

But now that I’m delegating, I’m starting finding it much easier to delegate, and making sure that they meet the deadlines, because that was my biggest failure, as “I’m giving this to someone else. If they don’t meet this deadline, I’m going to be in trouble!”

And by using the coaching model has actually allowed them to meet the deadlines. And I’m not feeling that kind of pressure – that anxiety – of “They’re not meeting their deadlines!”

It’s lowered my stress levels massively. My stress levels were extremely high when I first came into the role. My first term in role was – I think I slept for the whole of Christmas! And then, this term I feel like I’ve really settled in, and I’m starting to use the coaching model so much more, that it’s actually…my life so much easier!