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Success Coaching Playbook

Brooklyn LAB is committed to helping scholars navigate the complex life and learning transitions they’ll face during the 2020-21 school year. Given the financial and health challenges created by COVID-19, as well as ongoing racial trauma, scholars will need support in a variety of learning contexts, including remote, in-person, one-on-one, and small-group instruction. That’s why we’re building the capacity of the full range of adults at Brooklyn LAB to serve as success coaches.

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Success Coaches are safe, trusted advisers who can guide each student in diverse learning environments. We are giving success coaches the tools to  embrace strength-based mindsets and high expectations and cultivate motivation and engagement, so that they can foster the well-being of LAB scholars and accelerate academic growth. 

Together with organizations across the country—including City Year, EL Education, The Forum for Youth Investment, The Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at Arizona State University, Transcend, Turnaround for Children, and Dezudio—we organized a series of conversations to understand the best ways to build and use a network of success coaches:

  • How might we use success coaching to support students in navigating multiple and complex life and learning transitions?

  • How might we improve adults’ relationship-building skills, coaching skills, and their ability to understand, design, and deploy tailored approaches to best support students from different contexts and cultures?

  • How might we ensure success coaches foster and maintain high expectations of our students and employ strength-based and culturally relevant approaches? 

  • How might success coaches work more effectively with students and families to understand and build upon shared values, strengths, and assets to ensure students learn and thrive? 

  • How might success coaches support students to start, persist, and invest deep effort for rigorous academic tasks and challenges?

  • How might success coaches help remove barriers to motivation, including those related to value, self efficacy, attribution, identity, and emotional states?

  • How might success coaches dramatically accelerate students’ mastery of critical content?


We’ve documented our learning in the Success Coaching Playbook, which uses research-based frameworks to build a robust, multi-tiered system of supports, protocols, and resources to help success coaches work with youth one on one. We are committed to using this resource and our partnerships to develop professional learning opportunities for our success coaches.


Brooklyn Laboratory Charter Schools sponsored an EdWebinar on the Success Coaching Playbook  in partnership with Digital Promise, Turnaround for Children, EL Education, and City Year. The webinar demonstrates how schools must go beyond safety measures to meet the needs of students and ensure that every young person has a relationship with a trusted adult to provide the support they need to learn and grow. 

Watch the Edwebinar here to learn more!


"This resource is a boon to any educator or leader who is trying to cultivate an environment of opportunity for students during this turbulent year.  The frameworks and examples can be applied easily in the remote or class-based setting, with little implementation burden and immediate value."

Margaret Raymond, CREDO, Stanford University

"Success coaching is one way to help ensure that the health, safety, wellbeing, and learning needs of youth are supported through research-informed responses to the many challenges COVID-19 presents." 

Jennifer Charlot, Partner at Transcend

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