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assistant coach pay

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It largely depends on your debate experience, the affluence of the school you are working for, and your ability to travel to tournaments on weekends.

 

At a minimum from judging you can usually make from 120-200 a weekend. Some schools will pay a stipend for coaching but it is usually relatively small unless you are coaching for a very large and prominent debate school. I'd say outside of judging assistant coaches who are not teachers make far less than a traditional job pays, but judging can be a fairly profitable and flexible enterprise.

 

 

That being said coaching debate is very rewarding if you love debate, and every debate organization I've ever been a part of has tried its hardest to make sure people helping them were taken of. Additionally debate needs coaches to help sustain the activity, I would encourage you to look for schools who need regular judges since they would be paying money for that anyway.

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Thanks, that is helpful. I am actually looking for a figure to present to a potential assistant. He is a college student who is looking for work. Our program is small, but fairly successful and so enjoys the support of the administration.

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I think that is a little bit of a different question. I think if the assistant is supposed to coach on a regular basis (and not just the weekend) the most relevant question is what other jobs are comparable are paying. In my opinion given that there is more flexibility for a debate coach than other more traditional jobs it resembles more of a flexible work study job than other things. Right now I believe work study maxes out at around 2,000 dollars a semester (or 4,000 a year). That means a 4,000 a year rate probably compares to many jobs available during the school year that also give the student flexibility.

 

The only other point of comparison I know of is maybe the graduate assistant stipend that many colleges give to Debate grad assistants those run from about 8,000 up to about 12,000. However, these students have 8 years of debate experience usually and are really expected to treat debate as a full time job. So the main difference between these two ranges is whether the person would be doing full time or part time type work.

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I think a system which outlines:

1) per practice (or per hour)

2) per file production (per hour or per page)--you may want to make adjustments for genuine research vs. just re-cutting camp files. (and probably with a maxium possible per week or per month)

3) per tournament (or per round) coaching/judging

 

plus expenses (copies, prints, book purchases, gas, etc....)

 

Giving a flat rate doesn't always make sense because work during the season can be so up and down.

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I agree that you should set clear expectations of what tasks will be required. I will disagree that you should not pay on a regular amount at a fixed interval (bi-weekly or monthly). That is because most people need money regularly, not just when debate season is in full heat, so it makes more sense to distribute pay in the most useful way rather than clustered around when tournaments are. For instance this policy would effect me very badly during Christmas time.

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Let me re-frame...

 

1) I would sit down with the prospect and ask them how much work they thought they needed to be competitive.

2) Ask them if they would be willing to do it on a per week or per month basis...and at what rate. (perhaps....what is 10 hours worth and what do we get for that?)

3) Tell them you will get back to them. Then decide how much that person is worth to you.

 

Ultimately the qualitative skill of your prospective to deliver is probably far more important this his/her ability to cut cards.

Actually--I would just be clear about my high expectations & tying those expectations to payment.

 

The reason i said all of the above...is because I know debaters & college students in general like to slack. And I've experienced this with former debaters I've worked with.

Edited by nathan_debate

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I'm an assistant coach (but the only policy coach) at one of the best schools in a fairly isolated region. There's good debate in Colorado, but no one really travels much.

 

I make $10/hour for practices and tournaments. That's it. And I'd do my job for free if asked - college students (like me) coach debate because we care about contributing to something we love. Could I make better money elsewhere? Absolutely. But I wouldn't, because debate and my debaters are what I love.

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I would suggest not trying to pay your assistant coach by the hour. I'm on a stipend and have to coach multiple events, but I make about $2000 a year. Nebraska is notorious for exploiting what was referenced above, that college kids will work for next to nothing. That's ultimately why I wouldn't advise trying to figure it out by hour. We tried to figure out how much I'm paid by the hour by spreading out my stipend and it's somewhere around 32 cents an hour between tournaments, coaching, and research.

 

There are two other ways that NE assistants get paid. First is by jacking the judging payments. A lot of assistants are just paid $125-150 per tournament, which is about $50 more than the average judge makes. Second, there are some assistants who get paid the regular amount for judging and get paid a stipend. This fixes the timing issue that was discussed above. The assistant receives the smallish stipend monthly beyond the limits of the season and gets judging checks while the season goes on.

 

All this being said, assistant coaches are often invaluable. I wouldn't recommend paying your assistant what I get paid, cost of living differences etc.

 

On one last note, holla to theinstigator and Denver University. They are hosting the National Parliamentary Tournament of Excellence (I'm sitting outside of a round as we speak) even though they don't field a parli team.

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On a related note, it seems like judges around the country are paid A LOT more than in Colorado. If you're coming to a local tournament as a freelance judge, you make $8 or $9 per round in my state.

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I think it's very hard to talk about typical numbers, but here's some data I've gathered:

 

Around 2002-04 I was an assistant coach in Minneapolis and I was paid about $1000 flat rate with judge pay of $50 a day.

 

As a head coach for the last five years I've hired assistants for $1500-3000. In Minnesota the season lasts from roughly August-February and the rough expectations are that for $1500 you come to 5 tournaments and do a practice a week for that period and for $3000 you come to nearly every tournament (~13 per year) and practice twice a week. The stipend includes judging. Around here it would probably be very difficult to get quality assistants for less money.

 

Some of the high end programs around here - I have heard - pay assistants a flat rate of about $4500.

 

I have seen job postings for assistant coaches with duties roughly equal to those on my squad listed at $10,000 for major national circuit programs.

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My basic rule of thumb is to pay on a per tournament basis, only. My assistants show up only during tournament weeks and typically get paid for how many event pools they are judging. If just debate, we pay $115-125 for the weekend. If they are covering debates and IEs I typically push that up to $135-$150 and they are expected to come in at least once during the week for tournament prep and also assistant coach/prep duties throughout the tournament. This lets me pay them on an a la carte basis, since, we don't necessarily get to go to as many tournaments as a lot of other regions go to, and they aren't always needed for tournaments where we bring less participants.

 

 

I think its important to be, at least, somewhat competitive with the local minimum wage. Here in Washington the minimum wage is 8.67, I think. Which is why I try to pay a little bit higher than most of the other coaches in the area.

Edited by Nature Boy

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