Standard 3.1: Program resources
Expenses to consider during budget development include the following:
- Stipends for mentors
- Release time for beginning teachers to observe experienced teachers
- Release time for mentors to observe beginning teachers
- Professional development for mentors and beginning teachers
- Supplies, materials, and other resources
- Technology incentives tied to curriculum or school improvement plans
- Stipend/salary for program coordinators
- Evaluation-related expenses
- Meals and meeting rooms (if applicable)
The planning for the allocation of adequate resources begins well before the new school year. It is essential that program coordinators are included in the district budget development process. The needs of the program must be considered at the budget development stage, whether that means attending budget committee meetings or submitting financial proposals.
Prepare to be creative and brainstorm with stakeholders for mutually agreeable solutions. If the program is unable to provide mentors with stipends, it could provide alternate compensation such as an extra personal day, additional classroom technology, release from extra duties, or some before and/or after school release time.
Actively seek to partner with organizations and businesses to provide incentives and perks. A local coffee shop or diner may donate nominal gift cards to be given to mentors to treat their beginning teacher for the first meeting. A local retailer could donate gift cards to allow mentor/beginning teacher pairs to buy supplies for their classrooms.
Consider partnering with local universities, ROEs, and/or teachers’ unions. All of these organizations have a stake in beginning teachers’ professional success and may offer in-kind professional development for mentors/beginning teachers.