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Updated November 23, 1998
In 1991 the state Joint Task Force on Teacher Preparation was considering a beginning teacher evaluation program built around a internship with close supervision, gradually increasing teacher responsibilities, and an emphasis on developing teachers' reflective skills and judgment. The program was to use a "clinical master's degree" as the focus of the induction experience. The plan was to be implemented in October 1994.
During 1993 the Mass. Education Reform Act called for districts to provide support and evaluation of all teachers hired with only the first level of certification, "Provisional with Advanced Standing". Districts were to submit their plans to provide these programs to the MDOE.
In 1995 the State of Massachusetts was considering plans for a more summative evaluation approach to working with beginning teachers. The focus of the evaluation was to determine whether a new teacher had sufficiently demonstrated the skills of teaching to earn a teaching certificate.
In February 1996 the MDOE awarded the first round of Goals 2000 Preservice grants to 17 school districts and their partners to design and plan for Beginning Teacher Induction Programs.
In September 1996 another round of Goals 2000 Preservice grants for Beginning Teacher Induction Programs were awarded to 18 districts and their partners.
In the 1997-98 school year, 38 districts and their partners received grants to support Beginning Teacher Induction Programs. The funding is a combination of Goals 2000 and Eisenhower Title II Professional development funds paid through the higher education partners. The total funding that year was $640,000.
After August 1998, at the end of the grants, the districts were to submit their program designs and evaluation results to the State Dept. of Education to assist the state as it develops state-wide induction program standards and guidelines. As of September 1998 an AFT survey of the Mass. BTIP found no state funding was provided any longer, although, apparently the mandate for the programs remains. (See AFT (Sept. 1998). "Mentor Teacher Programs in the States", Educational Issues Policy Brief #5, Washington, DC: American Federation of Teachers.)
The Massachusetts approach was a support team which includes a mentor, an evaluation process based on state teaching "Principles" and curriculum frameworks, a mentor selection and training process, and orientation for novice teachers. The details of this program are on the SDE web site listed below.
The State Dept. contact person is Pam Herrup at 617-388-3300 X 225. The Mass. State Dept. of Education, 350 Main St. Malden, MA 02148.
If you are aware of incorrect statements in this material OR if you can add authoritative new information concerning mentoring and induction in the various United States, please contact Barry Sweeny with that information. His e-mail is <>.
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