Main Content

Program Goals, Design, Evaluation, and Resources

  1. Introduction

    Local program design is based on beginning teacher development, support, retention, and improved student learning. The goals are guided by current research on induction, effective practices, Illinois Induction Program Standards, district/school improvement plans (if relevant), and local concerns/context/initiatives. (See Standard 2, Illinois Induction Program Continuum)

    Program leadership allocates and monitors sufficient resources to meet all goals and deliver program components to all participants. (See Standard 3, Illinois Induction Program Continuum)

  2. Tasks

    1. Review research
      1. Review research on best practices for a high quality standards-driven induction program and research that addresses reasons for an induction program, how the program can be justified, and how to advocate for induction and mentoring. Start on the INTC website, in the “Resources and Research” section. Review these research findings to get started:
        1. Teacher quality is a critical factor in student achievement. (Rivkin, Hanushek, & Kain, 2005).
        2. Beginning teacher induction is critically important for teacher development and retention (Ingersoll & Strong, 2011).
        3. Although induction programs vary from district to district they usually contain common activities such as orientation, classroom support, professional development, collaboration with colleagues and mentoring (Ingersoll & Strong, 2011).
        4. Comprehensive induction programs are defined as opportunities for beginning teachers to collaborate in small learning communities, observe experienced colleagues' classrooms, be observed by expert mentors, analyze their own practice, and network with other novice teachers (Smith & Ingersoll, 2004).
        5. When teachers are paired with highly trained mentors, the pace of beginning teacher learning increases. (Moir, Barlin, Gless and Miles, 2009).
        6. High impact induction must sanction time for teachers to be observed and reflect on their own teaching, as well as on their students' learning (Darling-Hammond et al., 2009).
        7. Instructional mentoring is effective when it is consistent and based on an explicit vision of good teaching as well as an understanding of adult learning (Feiman-Nemser, 2001).
        8. Ideally beginnings teachers should be matched with trained mentors who are knowledgeable about their subject matter (Rockoff, 2008).
        9. The best form of professional development includes providing opportunities for reflection on practice to develop teachers' understanding of content, pedagogy, and learners (Hord and Sommers, 2008).
      2. Network with other induction programs and attend the INTC annual induction conference in order to learn about other effective induction program
      3. Share findings with key stakeholders
    2. Establish program goals
      1. Determine program goals based on desired outcomes for beginning teachers (regarding their practice or retention), students, and schools as a whole
      2. Include input from various stakeholders such as administrators, mentors, and teachers
      3. Connect to other district/school/university partnership initiatives (e.g., teacher evaluation and development, school improvement plans, professional learning teams, university teacher education, and professional development schools)
    3. Design program evaluation (See Standard 9, Illinois Induction Program Continuum)
      1. Create evaluation instruments for use by administrators, beginning teachers, and mentors
      2. Determine how evaluation results will be articulated and publicized
      3. Create a plan for program revisions based on evaluation results
      4. Collect baseline data which can be used to compare with end-of-the-year and other data
      5. Use the Illinois Induction Program Continuum as the basis for self-assessment and program improvement
    4. Create a budget (see the separate section on Finances and Budget in this document)
    5. Define the roles and responsibilities of every stakeholder, for example:
      1. Administrator in charge of the program
      2. Program Coordinator
      3. Building administrator(s)
      4. Instructional (formal) mentors
      5. Cultural (informal) mentors
      6. Beginning teachers
      7. Veteran teachers
      8. Board of Education members
      9. Parent/Community members
      10. Union leadership
      11. University partners
      12. Regional Office of Education/Intermediate Service Center
    6. Determine a timeline for setting up a program (see the Timeline)
      1. Create a timeline which articulates activities, tasks, evaluations, and outcomes on a monthly basis
      2. Include information about who is responsible for each item in the timeline
      3. Include information about when and how each goal/outcome will be evaluated
  3. Notes on Highly Effective Practices

    1. Include union leadership on the Collaborative Leadership Team to ensure that the collective bargaining agreement will be followed. For example, the local agreement may require that beginning teachers be compensated for after-school meetings.
    2. Ensure that induction and mentoring practices are consistent with building/district/state policies and procedures such as teacher evaluation, individual growth plans, and professional development expectations.
    3. Share program information with others: e.g. the school, the district, and Board of Education, and the community.
    4. Include all stakeholders in the planning and communication processes.