How to Help Beginning Teachers Succeed

By Stephen P. Gordon; Susan Maxey | Go to book overview

2
The Solution: A Beginning
Teacher Assistance Program

She's very understanding and compassionate. I know that whenever I
have a problem, I can call her at home or I can see her after school and
she'll always take the time to talk to me. She always gives me that positive
reinforcement, that pat on the back.

—A BEGINNING TEACHER DISCUSSING HER MENTOR

Adiscussion of what a beginning teacher assistance program (BTAP) is usually leads to a discussion about the definition of [beginning teacher.] Is the experienced substitute teacher who has just been hired for her first regular teaching assignment a beginner? What about the person who is returning after several years? How about the experienced teacher who is new to the district, building, content area, or grade level? Most likely, all of these teachers need some special assistance, but the support they require is different from the support needed by the true novice. Questions like [What should be the goals of the assistance program?], [Who will be served by the program?], [How long will individuals be part of the program?], and [What types of support are most appropriate for different types of 'beginners'?] are best dealt with at the local level. When answering these questions, the local development team must consider variables

-9-

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How to Help Beginning Teachers Succeed
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Contents iii
  • 1: The Problem 1
  • 2: The Solution 9
  • 3: Developing an Assistance Program 22
  • 4: Mentors 34
  • 5: Needs Assessment 49
  • 6: Forms of Initial Assistance 58
  • 7: Forms of Ongoing Assistance 66
  • 8: Summative Program Evaluation 86
  • References 95
  • Resources for Practitioners 102
  • Index 108
  • About the Authors 111
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