red Supported Site Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo: Induction & Mentoring

Successes

  • Improved the quality of student teacher mentoring.

Challenges

  • Mentoring of teachers once they leave our program is almost non-existent in a structured format. We have made some attempts, but have not yet found something that fits into the time constraints of the new teacher, the distance between participants (most students leave the area after they receive their credential), and the time constraints of the TIR.
  • As the program continues, it will become more difficult to find enough placements for our student teachers in our local schools.

Sustainability/Institutional Buy-In

  • Everyone on campus thinks it is better to have the TIR do the induction and mentoring of student teachers and new teachers.
  • The TIR has been sustained at Cal Poly in a large part to do the mentoring of student teachers, so this aspect of the job will be sustained as well.

Lessons Learned

  • As mentioned above, mentoring new teachers is extremely difficult for the TIR to carry out. We established a blog for the teachers credentialed in 05-06 so they could support each other and keep in touch. Every other month Dave Buck-Moyer provided a prompt, and the first year teachers were to post their response on the blog and then respond to at least one other person' s post. This didn’t make it through the year as participation dropped off. We went to a quarterly email that was received better.

Mentoring Activities-Student Teachers

  • The TIRs started a once-a-week seminar where we help our candidates with their current needs in the classroom. In addition, the TIRs bring up weekly topics that our crucial to their success in getting a job and sustaining that job.
  • The TIRs observe our student teachers approximately once a week. The visitation consists of looking at the lesson design, watching the lesson and conferencing with the student after the lesson. The immediate feedback, both written and oral has been a powerful tool in helping our candidates improve.

Mentoring Activities-First year teachers

  • We established a blog for the teachers credentialed in 05-06 so they could support each other and keep in touch. Every other month Dave Buck-Moyer provided a prompt, and the first year teachers were to post their response on the blog and then respond to at least one other person' s post. This didn’t make it through the year as participation dropped off. We went to a quarterly email that was received better.