High school teachers: Can they coach?
Every school and district has its own policies regarding who can work as a high school coach. Some schools require coaches to also be full-time teachers with a teaching degree or certificate, and follow the same hiring process as any other educator.
There are some exceptions for niche roles within the school. A high school might have an athletic director on staff who works as part of the administration team. This person usually manages the budget for sports and guides the teachers who also work as coaches.
Coaching vs. teaching
There are multiple similarities between teachers and coaches in high school. Both teach skills to high school students, for example, while preparing them for life after graduation.
While teachers, generally speaking, may focus on an array of subjects, like English, history or math, teachers who choose to be coaches typically specialize in health and physical education during their teaching hours.
Important skills for a high school coach
Work history also plays a role in qualifying for a high school coaching role. Coaches rely on several important skills when working effectively with students. These are:
- Communication: Coaches must clearly explain what students need to know and why it is important.
- Decision-making: Leading a team means making objective decisions that are also fair.
- Interpersonal skills: High school students are still maturing. Coaches must know how to connect with them in ways they understand.
- Resourcefulness: Coaches might not have the budget or equipment they want to run their team. This means they need to get creative.
High school coaches also need a deep understanding of the sports they oversee in order to lead their teams.