Become an Instructional Coach

×Note: Coach applications for VISTA's teacher programs are accepted on an ongoing basis with priority given to applications received by February 28 (elementary program)and July 18 (secondary program).

The VISTA project is currently seeking qualified instructional coaches who can provide specialized coach/mentor support for elementary, middle, or high school science teachers in partnering VISTA schools.

The VISTA Instructional Coach will:

  • Form a trusting and reflective professional partnership with one or more elementary, middle, or high school science teachers
  • Support teachers to conduct inquiry and problem-based learning in relevant, real science contexts
  • Assist teachers with inquiry and problem-based learning lesson planning, classroom management, instructional strategies, analysis of student work, curriculum development, and assessment
  • Support teachers during regular classroom visits through co-planning, co-teaching, and constructive feedback with a focus on continuous improvement
  • Attend all coach training sessions throughout the year
  • Assist teachers or team of teachers during the elementary science institute or secondary graduate science education courses
  • Accommodate the scheduling needs of teachers including early morning and late afternoon hours (beyond the regular contractual hours for teachers) 
  • Write and submit coaching reports electronically
  • Participate in the program evaluation process, including data collection and videotaping



    Applicants must have the following qualifications:

    • Experience in elementary and/or secondary science education
    • Knowledge of standards-based curricula
    • Flexibility to do extended classroom visits
    • Ability to participate in required training throughout the year to acquire knowledge and skills to be an effective coach
    • Strong interpersonal and communication skills
    • Proficiency with email, word processing, and today’s classroom technologies
    • Exemplary classroom practice and leadership capacity
    • Credibility among teachers and administrators
    • Demonstrated commitment to personal professional growth and learning

    Experience/knowledge in the following areas preferred:

    • Working in rural, high-poverty and/or diverse setting
    • Coaching/mentoring teachers and other collaborative methods


    • $325/day for training and school visits
    • Compensation provided for travel to and from training and school visits
    • A trip to the Virginia Association of Science Teachers (VAST) conference
    • Professional Development institute in the fall.

    Time commitment

    Varies depending on the program:

    • Elementary instructional coaches provide 3 days* of in-classroom support per teacher on the team and attend 7 days* of training/meetings.
    • Secondary instructional coaches provide 12 days* of in-classroom support per teacher in the first year and 3 days* of in-classroom support per teacher in the second year as well as attend 5 days* of training/meetings each year.

    (*NOTE: A "day" constitutes 7.5 hours, which may actually be completed over multiple calendar days.)

    To Apply

    • Apply online at
    • References required from colleagues who can attest to your science education knowledge and leadership (e.g., science coordinators, department chairs, science leads, principals)