Accelerating teacher effectiveness: the power of partnerships

Sep 19, 2023 11:00 AM

Jodi Eirich

Department of Education Professions, Frostburg State University, Frostburg, Maryland, USA, and

Jane Wildesen

Garrett County Public Schools, Oakland, Maryland, USA


Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to describe a thriving partnership between Frostburg State University and the Garrett County Public Schools that aims to improve teacher effectiveness and retention through the implementation of a robust induction program. The initiative includes sustained, strategic mentoring; extensive professional development; and validated, competency-based microcredentials aligned to high-leverage practices.

Design/methodology/approach – The study included surveys and structured interviews with teaching fellows and their instructional coaches.

Findings – Having ample support and mentoring can make a significant difference for novice teachers. Partnerships between universities and local school districts can provide this critical support.

Research limitations/implications – A limitation that cannot be ignored is the small number of participants in this program, all of whom are teaching in a rural school system. However, researchers working with larger school districts would add valuable knowledge to the field of study.

Practical implications – This paper includes implications for designing new induction programs or improving existing ones.

Social implications – Mentoring, a major component of high-quality induction programs, has the potential of providing important benefits to beginning teachers including increased motivation, self-confidence, growth in professional identity, and reduced stress and anxiety.

Originality/value – As school systems are struggling to retain qualified teachers, high-quality induction programs are necessary.

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