School districts and policymakers are seriously underinvesting in the student teaching experience.
Jose Garza, NCTR’s 2019 Mentor of the Year, is featured in a video on Education Post from 2015 in which he reflects on his role as a first-year mentor teacher through the Alumni Teach Project at the Los Angeles at Partnership to Uplift Communities Schools (PUC). “Having that right disposition and mindset to be a teacher, what’s essential is humility and innovation.”
Teaching Works is hosting its annual Practice-Based Teacher Education Workshop at the University of Michigan School of Education, July 8-10. The workshop will use videos and transcripts in place of field observations in order to create more time for teacher educators to practice teacher education pedagogies. Registration and more information here.
Student teachers need more high-quality mentors
School districts and policymakers are seriously underinvesting in the student teaching experience and should do more to ensure that the most effective teachers are acting as mentors to those new to the profession.
According to an analysis by Brookings, student teachers with highly effective mentors during their pre-service training are as effective as third-year teachers when they enter the profession. That jump in early career effectiveness equates to an additional $70,000 in lifetime earnings for each of their students.
Given that the benefits to students academically is so significant, the Brookings authors argue that districts and policymakers should encourage more of their best teachers to become mentors by offering at least $3,500 for the extra work. (They arrived at this figure by concluding that the average third-year teacher makes $3,500 more than the average first-year teacher.) In Washington state, most mentors are paid only about $200 for taking on the role.
However, it’s not just a lack of financial incentive that keeps the most effective teachers from mentoring students, the report notes. “Interviews with individuals responsible for student teachers reveal skepticism that good teachers are also good mentors,” the authors wrote. “Furthermore, some individuals appear to shy away from mentoring because they are uncomfortable with being differentiated from their colleagues.”
The mentor-resident relationship is the key to the residency model, and the average mentor in an NCTR Network program is paid nearly $3,000 for their expertise. Successful residencies also establish strong candidate pipelines to ensure a steady supply of qualified mentors, andthey screen for the skills and dispositions that research has determined are key to being effective teacher educators.
Please note that the articles and events in the NCTR E-Blast do not reflect the opinions of our organization, but rather represent information that we believe will be relevant to you and your programs.