Be as specific as you can in your response.
Instructional Coordinator Interview Questions
As an instructional coordinator you will often find yourself on the less popular side of opinion. How do you deal with that?
Be as specific as you can in your response.
"I always acknowledge the teachers' opinions first. I ask them for their concerns and really get into why they don't agree with something. I always do my best to give them a thoughtful answer on the spot, but if I can't, I tell them that I'm going to look into the matter for them. You really have to listen to them first. That's how you earn the right to speak to them. If they see that they're being listened to, it makes it easier to swallow a hard pill when the time comes."
"I will always acknowledge the opinions of the teachers first. I would ask them of the concerns and why they might disagree with something. I would do my best to answer thoughtfully, but If I can't, I will let them know that I would get back to them. It is very important to listen to them first. That's how you earn the right to speak to them."Rachelle's Answer
Earning the right to be involved, and give an opinion, is a very good point. Your angle is humble but still confident. Nicely done.Was this answer helpful? Yes or NoThank you, your vote helps us display the best answers.
How long were you a teacher before transitioning into an Instructional Coordinator?
Be direct and explain why you chose to branch off into the Instructional Coordinator role. Adjust your answer to suit the values and needs of the organization.
"I was a teacher for 5 years. I left teaching to be an Instructional Coordinator as soon as I could because I really wanted to affect the educational system. Teaching kids is wonderfully impactful, but I could only impact 30 kids a year. I wanted to make impacts for the entire district, and I see this is a a chance to do that."
How do you usually determine which textbooks you will choose?
Lay out your decision-making process and use 'If/Then' language. Make sure to demonstrate that you would be aligned with the school's principles and values. You can also use this opportunity to show that you like to develop yourself professionally.
"First, I'd look at what we need to achieve and what the weakest areas were in my last class. If I see that, last year, my students' social studies scores weren't too good, then I'll look into what the deficiencies were and see if there's any improvements that could come from the choice of textbook. I'd ask my colleagues for their opinions, and I'd also look on online communities for ideas. I take a look at each textbook and imagine myself teaching it. It's got to be accessible to the children."
"First, I would analyze the data to get a better understanding of the students' strengths and areas in need of improvement. Next, I would research the best books that would address the needs of our students, while doing so I would also imagine myself as the teacher facilitating the lessons to ensure that I am making a choice that would benefit both teachers and students. Then I would solicit the opinions of the teachers by having them also review the textbooks to suggest feedback, as far as the textbook alignment with the needs of our students as well as if it's teacher and student-friendly."Rachelle's Answer
Your multi-stage approach is wonderful! This answer shows that you are very mindful of your decisions as an instructional coordinator.Was this answer helpful? Yes or NoThank you, your vote helps us display the best answers.
Why did you initially aspire to be an instructional coordinator?
Research the organization's mission and values and find ways to illustrate how you're aligned with them. If there are negative reasons that compelled you to move away from being a teacher, instead focus on a positive reason that drew you towards being an instructional coordinator. Don't focus on the sinking ship, focus on the greener pastures.
"Teaching was a wonderful experience and I learned a lot from it. Once I learned about the instructional coordinator position, I knew that that's what I want to do because of how much more of an impact I can make. I also love negotiating with people. I want the chance to use my skill at influencing people."
Do you want to be in Education for your entire career? Tell me about your long term career goals.
The interviewer is concerned with long-term fit for this role. Your objective here is to remove any doubts that your career trajectory will lead you away from the education field. Draw out a specific plan for your career that illustrates that you'll stay in Education.
"I've always wanted to be in education. I was a teacher for five years, so I really know the field quite well. I'm looking for ways to grow professionally. I'd like to be an instructional coordinator for 3-5 years, so that I can develop good relationships with school leadership and prove myself. From there, I plan on seeing what opportunities there are higher up in leadership so that there are opportunities for decision-making. Eventually, I might even consider opening a charter school."
How do you continuously strive to improve the teaching abilities of your team?
Show the step-by-step process that you use and how each step relates to timeframes.
"I have weekly check-ins with my team as well as monthly and quarterly meetings where we talk about short-term and medium-term objectives and concerns that they might have. I'm very big on giving feedback as immediately as I can and following up to see if they're implementing it. I ask them to come up with positives from the new implementations and see if there are any negatives. This is the continual feedback system that I use to improve the team."
What drives you do do your best every day?
Research the school's mission and values. Choose one of the values and come up with response that appeals to that value and is aligned with the mission. Be creative about bridging the gap between the school's mission and the motivation for your performance.
"I really like that your school strives for agency. I think that at-risk students can only thrive if everyone takes agency, takes ownership of the experience. The parent, the teacher, and the student all need to understand that they have power in their own hands. And that's what drives me to do my best every single day: I know that those students depend on their teachers and see them as a model. If I don't bring my A-game, these teachers won't either, which means the students aren't getting a fair chance at life."
How closely do you adhere to National curriculum standards?
Provide a straightforward answer and demonstrate your understanding of the importance of adherence to professional standards.
"I fully meet the standards and earned my license to teach Social Studies for grades 7-12."
How do you continue to educate yourself?
Provide concrete answers. Choose a few trending articles and check your local teacher's union newsletter.
"I always strive to improve. Even though I have my Master's, I'm not done learning. I keep up with the latest techniques on Educator Today, and I subscribe to a daily 'Tip of the Day' email for educators. I look for ways to apply them on a daily basis, and at the end of the day I reflect and see what went well and what didn't. Then I think of ways to improve and also to reinforce what I'm doing well."
"I always strive to improve. Even though I have my doctorate, I am not done learning. I keep up with the latest techniques and research by reading research journals on ASCD."Rachelle's Answer
Great answer! I like how you made mention of your higher education while also expressing that you are eager to continue your learning.Was this answer helpful? Yes or NoThank you, your vote helps us display the best answers.
What is your favorite form of interactive learning?
Give your favorite form of interactive learning and explain why by using brief points that relate to the school's mission and values.
"I love using Minecraft to teach because it really energizes and engages the students. I know that this school is big on leveraging technology to improve our students' lives, and Minecraft has a lot of systems to facilitate that learning. For example..."
How do you keep up to date on new technologies to better enhance students education?
Describe any habits that you've developed to keep abreast technology matters. Provide an example.
"I'm always reading technology magazines like Wired and Popular Science. Whenever I see something new and interesting, I think about how I might be able to use that in a lesson.
For example, when iPads first came out, I read about how the App Store would be open to any developers who wanted to make an App for it. So I kept an eye on the educational software section."
As an instructional coordinator, how do you keep yourself motivated and enthusiastic even when you are met with resistance?
Review the ways that you manage your stress. You want to show the interviewer that you're resilient and positive. The more concrete your examples, the better. This is a chance to show your thinking process. Turn a negative into a positive, and end on a positive note.
"I really believe in the school's mission, and I'm really empathetic, and to both sides. When things are rough, I think about how wonderful both the teachers and the school leadership are: they both care about the students so much that they have a personal stake in the way that things are done. That puts a smile on my face. And every morning, I remind myself that education is a dynamic field: it's always changing because the students are changing from year to year, and so is the world. I'm really lucky to be part of such a dynamic field that keeps me intellectually engaged. I get to solve all these different kinds of problems."
When you were a teacher, what was your favorite subject to teach? What grades?
Give an honest answer and remember to explain why.
"I really loved teaching English to the sixth grade. They've just moved onto a higher level and a lot of them are excited to have that extra responsibility. They start to question you more, which makes things more challenging and interesting, which I like."
If a school is performing poorly in a certain subject, what are your immediate action steps?
Give a brief step-by-step overview of your troubleshooting process. Make sure your answer spans the short term first. If appropriate or necessary, zoom out a little bit and talk about your strategies to improve on medium-to-long term timeline.
"I'll bring it to the attention of the teachers and ask them if there have been any particular pain points that they're facing. I'll then ask them if there's anything that they can immediately identify that we can be doing better, if there are resources that they needed but weren't given in a timely fashion. Things that we can do immediately to improve the situation.
From there, we'll talk about deeper issues, such as problems with infrastructure, the administrative system, things like that. These are things that will give us better performance in the long run."
How have you helped teachers understand new technologies for the classroom?
Use concrete examples if you have any. The main point is to paint a clear picture for the interviewer about the way you engage with teachers. Walk them through what you might do, step by step, without getting into too much detail.
"I ask the principal if I can take up some time on professional development day for a seminar to teach the teachers about a new technology. I gather all the teachers on that day and I'll give them an overview of the technology. For instance, it might be a new eLearning platform. I'll show them a quick tour of the features and give examples of how they might use them in the class. Then I'll have the teachers interact with the platform for 5-10 minutes, and then we'll have a Q&A session. I take their feedback and then I make sure that they have easy access to me if they have any more concerns or questions."
Tell me about a time when you failed to meet an objective.
What is your favorite book for educators' self development?
Would you consider yourself to be highly accountable?
Would you consider yourself an influencer?
Are you a strong negotiator?
How would you interact with faculty members in order for them to understand that integrating technology into their lessons could be beneficial?
Tell me about your post-secondary education. Have you completed your Masters' Degree?
What are your thoughts on an arts based education?
Do you agree or disagree with the majority of our State's curriculum standards? What would you change if you could?
Tell me about a time when you've had a difficult teacher to work with. What made them difficult and how did you create a breakthrough?
Tell me about a new teaching technique in which you recently learned.
When have you taken a risk on a new teaching approach or suggestion? Was it successful?
What was your biggest curriculum change you have implemented? Why did you feel a need to change it in the first place?
When have you had to coach a teacher? What was the issue, and was it a success?