Pennsylvania

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Updated March 16, 1998


Pennsylvania -

Pennsylvania has had an interesting process of evolving beginning teacher programs that stretches back about 30 years! The state began it's support programs with the Teacher Intern Certification Program (TICP) since at least 1969. The TICP was a program that supported any of the new teachers who were entering the teaching career through an alternate route, other than through a university or college teacher education program. The state TIC Program "encouraged" mentoring of all beginning teachers but did not provide any state funding to support district programs.

From 1969 to 1983 the TICP was just open to graduate level interns. Then in 1983, the TIC Program was changed to allow any person with a B.A. to enter teaching through this alternate route program. The program was described as a "support and evaluation program". The program had general requirements which expected the local districts to develop their own support and evaluation approaches that were in line with the state guide lines. The interns were supervised by a committee of the principal, an experienced teacher (mentor) and a faculty member from a teacher education institution. Principals, not mentors, evaluated the new teacher's performance. Interns had to pass a state test and complete the induction program. New teacher interns had to earn a more advanced teaching certificate, which was required by the sixth year, for a person to be able to continue teaching.

On July 1, 1987 the Pennsylvania Teacher Induction Program (TIP) for beginning teachers was established. The TIP program included a mentor or mentor team that was to support new teachers.

In 1990, as a part of changes in teacher certification, the TIP program guidelines were revised and reissued. Under the revised TIP requirements the new teacher had to complete the new TIP program as one of the conditions for attaining the next level of certification. Also included in the new TIP requirements was an "Induction Council" in each school, school goals for the TIP, and a TIP program that was specifically designed and structured to address these goals and meet the school's needs for inducting new teachers. It was also up to the school to select the mentors or mentoring teams and to define the roles for the mentor/mentor team, and school administrator.

The Pennsylvania State Department of Education published a helpful set of guidelines and state criteria to guide school districts in developing and implementing their Teacher Induction Program. See Pennsylvania Department of Education. (no date). "Guidelines for Developing and Implementing Teacher Induction programs". Harrisburg, PA: Pennsylvania State Department of Education.

In December, 1997 the State published "Teachers for the 21st Century- Pennsylvania's Teacher Preparation Initiative". This document includes the state "Standards for Institutions Preparing Professional Educators". Among these standards is "indicator #20" which states that "Teacher education institutions must provide on-going support to novice educators in partnership with schools during the induction period, including observation, consultation, and assessment." This document is the subject of some discussion currently and draft rules and regulations are being created. The document can be read on the Dept. of Education's website, which has a link in the next paragraph of this web page.

More info about the Penna. TIP can be obtained at the Pa. State Department of Education web site at <http://www.cas.psu.edu> or from The Bureau of Teacher Preparation & Certification, Pa. Dept. of Educ. 333 Market St. Harrisburg, PA 17126-0333, or at 717-787-3470. A state contact person is...


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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