Coaching in Communities: A Groundbreaking Approach to Equity-Focused Teacher Training

Melissa Wetzel

In her new book, “Coaching in Communities: Pursuing Justice, Teacher Learning, and Transformation,” Melissa Mosley Wetzel presents a new approach to training educators that can lead to positive change and foster equitable and inclusive practices.

Wetzel, a professor of language and literacy studies and chair of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at The University of Texas at Austin, draws on an eight-year study to develop a new training model called Coaching with CARE. This model focuses on justice-focused coaching to disrupt systems of oppression and includes a set of tools, such as real-life examples, shared inquiry and coaching cycles, that can be used by teacher education programs, school districts, schools, and other organizations.

The book provides insights into how the Coaching with CARE framework can be used in various professional and informal learning contexts, and in dialogue with families and communities to create more equitable and inclusive learning environments. The authors break down the roles of expert and novice, drawing from behavioral, cognitive, humanistic and critical models of coaching.

Published by Harvard Education Press, “Coaching in Communities” is co-authored by Erica Holyoke, assistant professor of responsive literacy education in the School of Education and Human Development at the University of Colorado Denver; as well as Kerry H. Alexander, Heather Dunham and Claire Collins, doctoral candidates in language and literacy studies at UT Austin. Wetzel’s scholarship and expertise focuses on literacy practices for equity and the development of justice-focused coaching and mentoring.

The book is a valuable resource for educators and coaches interested in justice-focused coaching and preservice teacher learning. With its practical tools and real-world examples, it offers a path forward for those looking to transform learning environments and disrupt systems of oppression.