Supported Site University of Alabama: Induction & Mentoring

Successes

  • The TIR's replacement was an uncertified physics major who had never previously taught physics. Mentoring of this teacher by the TIR was critically important. Evidence of this success is that the principal has asked the teacher to return for a second year.
  • As yet the program has no graduates, and there have been no new PhysTEC teachers to mentor.

Challenges

  • Since the TIR's replacement was not certified and had no previous teaching experience, helping this teacher become successful was a significant challenge.

Sustainability

  • An Induction course will be developed for PhysTEC teachers.
  • The TIR will regularly visit classrooms of future local PhysTEC teachers.

Lessons Learned

  • Because of the shortage of qualified high school physics teachers in Alabama, it is important when hiring a TIR to help ensure a successful replacement. If the TIR's replacement is a new teacher, then the agreement to mentor this replacement is an important factor in getting the school to agree to the TIR hire.

Activities

  • The TIR regularly mentored her replacement. This involved assisting with Science in Motion labs, occasional guest teaching, and providing frequent advice on topics such as assessment and dealing with parents.