Technical Assistance Toolbox: Tools to Support Systemic Change Along the Educator Career Continuum

Techical Assistance Toolbox Preparation

Mentoring & Induction Overview

Preparation Recruitment, Hiring, & Retention Mentoring & Induction Professional Development Compensation Evaluation Leadership Home

Mentoring and induction include both formal and informal processes that transition teachers from preparation programs into the classroom. Mentoring and induction often socialize new teachers to their roles, improve their instructional effectiveness, and increase retention. States and districts should consider mentoring and induction as one point along the educator's career continuum and design programs that meet local needs. High-quality induction should:

  • Help beginning teachers feel prepared and comfortable in the classroom and the school.
  • Establish a professional community among beginning and veteran teachers through networks and communities of practice within the school.
  • Serve to increase teacher effectiveness and advance student learning.

Research & Policy Brief

The following Research & Policy Brief includes a discussion about strategies to build positive and supportive school cultures for the younger generation of teachers. Schools and districts can help develop more attractive working conditions in schools by implementing mentoring and induction programs.

Tips & Tools Key Issue

The TQ Center published a Key Issue regarding several strategies to consider when developing high-quality mentoring and induction programs. Strategies discussed in this Key Issue include: create a comprehensive system that involves mentoring and formative assessment, open induction programs to all beginning teachers, structure programs using state and district guidelines, hold initial orientation for teachers before the first day of employment, and create a mentor-training program.

The Need:

The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction and Great Lakes West Comprehensive Center approached the TQ Center for assistance in advancing mentoring and induction policies at the state level.

Our Response:

The TQ Center collaborated with the Regional Educational Laboratory Midwest, the Great Lakes East Comprehensive Center, the Great Lakes West Comprehensive Center, and the North Central Comprehensive Center to host a regional forum that included a focus on mentoring and induction.

As a result, the TQ Center worked with Great Lakes West and the state of Wisconsin to review a survey instrument to assess the state's initial educator and mentor grant program in 2007. The following year, the TQ Center reviewed additional survey instruments that examined alignment of policy to research regarding mentoring and induction in the state.

Additionally, the TQ Center assisted in materials preparation and discussion facilitation for several meetings and seminars with the state about mentoring and induction and provided a presentation of the national context. TQ Center staff summarized this work and provided a comparison of teacher induction policies and laws in the Midwestern region in the Great Lakes West newsletter. For additional information, see Chapter 2 of the 2009 TQ Center Biennial Report.

The GTL Center supports Regional Comprehensive Centers (RRCs) through explicit technical assistance efforts; in addition, the GTL Center can provide assistance in Mentoring & Induction by:

  • Providing survey development and review services to states looking to examine their current mentoring and induction programs.

  • Connecting RCCs with state education agencies (SEAs) interested in working with content area experts to reform mentoring and induction policies.

  • Facilitating discussions to assist RCCs and SEAs to collaboratively develop plans to assess the current status of teacher induction and identify areas for improvement based on research and best practice.

  • Conducting a review of national and international trends and innovative examples of mentoring and induction policies and practices.

  • Providing research-based resources regarding mentoring and induction.

Learn more about how Mentoring & Induction affects Recruitment, Hiring, & Placement; Professional Development; Evaluation; and Compensation.

Techical Assistance Toolbox Mentoring & Induction Recruitment, Hiring, & Placement Professional Development Compensation Evaluation

A school or district with a well-known and respected mentoring and induction program may be able to better recruit new teacher candidates when there are openings. Teachers might be more likely to want to work in a district that provides quality mentoring and support. Teachers are more likely to work in a school that has a positive, supportive, and collaborative school culture. Learn more about how the GTL Center supports recruitment activities.

Mentoring and induction work in conjunction with many district professional development programs. Learn more about how the GTL Center supports professional development activities.

Mentoring and induction link to evaluation, because new teachers must be introduced to the evaluation system. Additionally, in some systems, teachers identified as highly effective can serve as mentors and coaches for a school or district mentoring and induction program. Learn more about how the GTL Center supports evaluation activities.

Mentoring and induction can connect with compensation systems that include mentor positions as a part of a teacher career ladder and identify effective teachers who take on other leadership roles in the school. Learn more about how the GTL Center supports compensation activities.

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