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Mentor and Induction Program for New Teachers
 

Last Updated: 02/01/2016

  Mentor and Induction Program for New Teachers
 

The mission of the Hanover Public Schools Mentoring and Induction Program is to engage the entire school community in a collegial environment that attracts, supports, and retains dedicated teachers committed to professional growth, which ensures a quality education for the children of Hanover.

The goals of this program are:

  1. Integrate teachers new to Hanover into the culture and norms of the school, district, and community.
  2. Provide training in classroom fundamentals and best practice.
  3. Foster a culture of continuous professional growth through reflection on practice and student learning.
  4. Attract and retain highly qualified teachers.

An Induction and Mentoring Program is to provide new teachers with support, encouragement and guidance, which will ultimately improve student learning.  Hanover Public Schools provides a mandatory Induction and Mentoring Program for beginning teachers. Through this Induction Program new teachers (mentees) are matched with experienced and trained mentor teachers within the first two weeks of school. The mentor and mentee will meet throughout their first year to engage in various mentoring activities. These activities will introduce the teachers to the culture of the schools and district, refine their practice, and better understand their professional responsibilities, all while providing continuous, non-evaluative collegial support. Some of these activities include preparation for upcoming events such as curriculum night, report cards, parent conferences, and end-of-year activities, as well as visiting the classrooms of experienced teachers.

In addition to the support by a mentor in their first year in Hanover, teachers have many additional opportunities to grow professionally. New teachers observe experienced colleagues in the classroom and are observed by mentors. Teachers participate in collaborative teams to develop lesson plans and assessments and to plan instruction based on students’ needs. Teachers have opportunities to enroll in after-school and summer professional development workshops. The Hanover Public Schools are committed to hiring, developing and retaining effective teachers. Induction and mentoring are key elements for the development and retention of a strong teaching staff. Our School Committee, Superintendent, Administrators, mentors and colleagues all have roles and responsibilities under the following three categories: orient, implement and evaluate to ensure a successful transition. Whether new to the profession or just new to the position, teachers will be supported at both the building and district level when they join the staff of the Hanover Public Schools.

Beginning Teacher Support Structures
Beginning teacher support structures are the substance of our induction program. They are crucial to a successful first year in the classroom. As part of licensure regulations, the Department of Education has identified support teams and mentoring as two essential structures that all districts must provide to their beginning teachers. In Hanover, all beginning teachers will be assigned a support team that consists of at least a mentor and an administrator qualified to evaluate teachers. [603 CMR 7.12 (2) (b)] This team will provide a support structure for beginning teachers consisting of multiple perspectives while laying the foundation for a collegial learning community.

Mentor Selection, Preparation, and Assignment
Proper selection, preparation and assignment of mentors is crucial to a successful mentoring relationship. The principal will match mentors and mentees.  Qualities, attributes, skills, experiences, and needs of the mentee will be the basis for determining the most productive mentor match.  Grade level, content area, and proximity will be considered. The qualities of effective mentors - as identified by participants in mentoring programs nationwide- may be organized into four general categories: attitude and character; professional competence and experience; communication skills; and interpersonal skills. Together with a willingness to serve and a vote of confidence by colleagues, these characteristics comprise guidelines for selecting mentors.

   
  *Attitude and Character:
  • Willing to be a role model for other teachers
  • Exhibits strong commitment to the teaching profession
  • Believes mentoring improves instructional practice
  • Willing to advocate on behalf of colleagues
  • Willing to receive training to improve mentoring skills
  • Demonstrates a commitment to lifelong learning
  • Is reflective and able to learn from mistakes
  • Is eager to share information and ideas with colleagues
  • Is resilient, flexible, persistent, and open-minded
  • Exhibits good humor and resourcefulness
  • Enjoys new challenges and solving problems
   
  *Professional Competence and Experience
  • Is regarded by colleagues as an outstanding teacher
  • Has excellent knowledge of pedagogy and subject matter
  • Has confidence in his/her own instructional skills
  • Demonstrates excellent classroom-management skills
  • Feels comfortable being observed by other teachers
  • Maintains a network of professional contacts
  • Understands the policies and procedures of the school, district, and teacher association
  • Is a meticulous observer of classroom practice
  • Collaborates well with other teachers and administrators
  • Is willing to learn new teaching strategies from mentee
  • Successful completion of a recognized course of study in mentoring and supporting new teachers
  • Currency in and ability to implement the best educational practices
  • Commitment to continuous learning about the art and craft of teaching
  • Commitment to collegial practices and experimentation
  • Professional Teacher Status in the Hanover Public Schools
   
  *Communication Skills
  • Proven track record of positive interpersonal relationships and effective communication
  • Is able to articulate effective instructional strategies
  • Listens attentively
  • Asks questions that prompt reflection and understanding
  • Offers critiques in positive and productive ways
  • Communicates effectively via email and other methods
  • Is efficient with the use of time
  • Conveys enthusiasm and passion for teaching
  • Is discreet and maintains confidentiality
   
  *Interpersonal Skills
  • Is able to maintain a trusting professional relationship
  • Knows how to express care for a mentees emotional and professional needs
  • Is attentive to sensitive political issues
  • Works well with individuals from different cultures
  • Is approachable; easily establishes rapport with others
  • Is patient

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  Teacher Evaluation
All teachers will be evaluated according to the provisions of the Agreement between the Hanover Teachers Association and the Hanover School Committee. The mentor will NOT participate in any way in the formal evaluation process of the mentee.

HPS Mentors - Mentor Role
Trust / Confidentiality:

As a rule a mentor should not discuss his/her mentee’s teaching performance with anyone including administrators.  Exceptions may occur, but should be done with the mentee’s permission.  Examples of exceptions include:

  • Performance discussions with members of the mentoring team (e.g., administrator) who may be resources for a mentee in terms of advice, professional development, instructional needs, etc.
  • Performance discussions with resource professionals such as someone who specializes in differentiated instruction, classroom management, safety in the lab, etc.

Another exception that may occur with the mentee’s knowledge is performance discussions with appropriate administrators if the mentor feels students are at risk in terms of academic and/or social growth or emotional and physical safety.

Support
:

  • Classroom Management
  • Collegiality
  • Communication with students, parents, colleagues, and administration.
  • Curriculum
  • District Logistics (Obtaining supplies, reporting dates, professional development requests, etc.)
  • District Policies
  • Emergency Procedures
  • Building Logistics
  • Goal Setting / Expectations / Values
  • Grading Systems and Reporting
  • Lesson Design
  • Problem Solving
  • Professional Development
  • Technology Assistance – where to get equipment, tech support
  • Time Management

Mentor Responsibilities

  1. Attendance at orientation meeting and lunch
  2. Maintain a mentoring log to be turned in to the principal by the last Friday in January and the first Friday in June.
  3. To request release time from the building principal to facilitate two to three observations. Please be sure to include this in your Mentoring Log. These observations are required for teachers new to the profession and optional for teachers new to the district with more than three years' experience.
  4. Mentors should meet with their mentees for a minimum of forty-five minutes per week. 
  5. Provide feedback to administration concerning their mentoring experience.
  6. Relationship compatibility – If the relationship is deemed incompatible and/or ineffective, please notify the Administrator to schedule a meeting. If after the meeting you wish to terminate the mentoring assignment, please notify the Assistant Superintendent in writing.

District Role / Responsibilities

  1. Provide coverage for mentors and new teachers when requested.
  2. Award 15 professional development hours to mentors for completing mentoring responsibilities.
  3. Each mentor will receive a stipend at the contractual rate for each person mentored per school year.

HPS Mentee Role - Year One
Trust / Confidentiality:

As a rule, mentees should feel free to discuss their teaching performance with their mentors.  With permission, it may be very helpful to allow collaborative performance discussions with other mentors, administrators, resource professionals, or other mentees.  Much can be learned from sharing information and stories with others who may have had similar experiences, i.e., advice, professional development direction, instructional needs, classroom management. With mentees knowledge, mentors may engage in performance discussions with appropriate administrators if the mentor feels students are at risk in terms of academic and/or social growth or emotional and physical safety.

Seek Support for ANY Teaching-related Issues:  Examples include…

  • Classroom Management
  • Collegiality
  • Communication with students, parents, colleagues, and administration.
  • Curriculum
  • District Logistics (Obtaining supplies, reporting dates, professional development requests, etc.)
  • District Policies
  • Emergency Procedures
  • Goal Setting / Expectations / Values
  • Grading Systems and Reporting
  • Lesson Design
  • Problem Solving
  • Professional Development
  • Technology Assistance (where to get equipment, tech support, etc.)
  • Time Management

Mentee's Responsibilities

  1. Attendance at August Induction (New Teacher Orientation Days).
  2. Attendance at mentee workshops.
  3. Maintain a Mentoring Log for your own licensure records.  This log can include time with your mentor as well as “mentoring moments” that may occur with administrators. Mentors will keep a record of all mentoring information and will provide the mentee with a copy at the mid-year point and again at the end of the school year.  
  4. Mentees should meet with their mentor for a minimum of forty-five minutes per week.
  5. Provide feedback to the Coordinator concerning their mentoring experience.
  6. Relationship compatibility – If the relationship is deemed incompatible and/or ineffective, please notify your administrator to schedule a meeting.  If after the meeting you wish to terminate a mentor assignment, please notify the Superintendent in writing. Mentees will be assigned a new mentor.

District Role / Responsibility

  1. Provide coverage for mentors or new teachers when requested.
  2. Assign a mentor for every new teacher and experienced teacher new to the district.
  3. Conduct monthly mentee workshops to provide guidance and support to beginner teachers and/or teachers new to the Hanover Public Schools.
  4. Monitor the effectiveness of the mentoring program.

HPS Mentee Role - Year Two-Three
Trust / Confidentiality:

As a rule, mentees should feel free to discuss their teaching performance with their mentors. With permission, it may be very helpful to allow collaborative performance discussions with other mentors, administrators, resource professionals, or other mentees. Much can be learned from sharing information and stories with others who may have had similar experience, i.e., advice, professional development direction, instructional needs, classroom management. With your knowledge, mentors may engage in performance discussions with appropriate administrators if the mentor feels students are at risk in terms of academic and/or social growth or emotional and physical safety.

Seek Support for ANY Teaching-related Issues: Examples include…

  • Classroom Management
  • Collegiality
  • Communication with students, parents, colleagues, and administration.
  • Curriculum
  • District Logistics
    (Obtaining supplies, reporting dates, professional development requests, etc.)
  • District Policies
  • Building Logistics
  • Emergency Procedures
  • Goal Setting / Expectations / Values
  • Grading Systems and Reporting
  • Lesson Design
  • Problem Solving
  • Professional Development
  • Technology Assistance - where to get equipment, tech support
  • Time Management

Mentees' Responsibilities:

  1. Maintain a Mentoring Log for your own licensure records.  Mentees will maintain their own Mentoring Log. Monthly observations and monthly mentee workshops should be recorded in the mentoring log.
  2. Mentees should log hours for professional development activities and appropriate “mentoring moments” that a mentee has with a colleague or administrator.
  3. Provide feedback to the Coordinator concerning their mentoring experience.
  4. Every second year mentee is responsible for recording mentoring hours.  If a mentee feels he/she needs more support in acquiring mentoring hours, please contact your Administrator. It is appropriate to inform the Coordinator at the mentee workshops if you have any concerns regarding your mentoring hours.

District Role / Responsibility

  1. Provide coverage for mentors or new teachers when requested.
  2. Appoint a mentor to guide second year teachers towards obtaining 50 hours of mentoring support.
  3. Conduct monthly mentee workshops to provide guidance and support to beginner teachers and/or teachers new to the Hanover Public Schools.
  4. To monitor the effectiveness of the mentoring program.
Peer Observation
During the first year of teaching, new teachers will be provided opportunities to visit the classrooms of experienced teachers. Visits will be arranged by new teacher mentors and/or administrators. Visits will include time for discussion between the experienced teacher and the new teacher before and after the observation. The induction program provides new teachers with multiple opportunities to learn from teachers who have developed their skills through study and practice. Visits are designed to assist new teachers with any of the skills needed for effective teaching, including: instructional strategies, classroom management and organization, uses of core and supplemental materials. Teacher coordinators, mentors, and building administrators will recommend and set up specific visits for new teachers. New teachers may request to visit a specific experienced colleague or a specific class. Where appropriate, visits may occur across buildings in the district. The building administrators will arrange class coverage for the new teacher. A minimum of two visits, during year one, will be arranged for new teachers.
   
  New Teacher Orientation
 
   
  Mentor / Mentee Forms
 

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