Preconditions for Teacher Induction Programs
- Each Induction program must be designed to provide a two-year, individualized, job-embedded system of mentoring, support and professional learning that begins in the teacher’s first year of teaching.
- The Induction program must identify and assign a mentor for each participating teacher within the first thirty days of the participant’s enrollment in the program, matching the mentor and participating teacher according to credentials held, grade level and/or subject area, as appropriate to the participant’s employment.
- Each Induction program must assure that each participating teacher receives an average of not less than one hour per week of individualized support/ mentoring coordinated and/or provided by the mentor.
- Goals for each participating teacher must be developed within the context of the Individual Learning Plan (ILP) within the first sixty days of the teacher’s enrollment in the program.
- The Individual Learning Plan must be designed solely for the professional growth and development of the participating teacher and not for evaluation for employment purposes.
- An Induction program sponsor must make available and must advise participants of an Early Completion option for “experienced and exceptional” candidates who meet the program’s established criteria.
Induction Program Standards
Standard 1 – Program Purpose: Each Induction program must support candidate development and growth in the profession by building on the knowledge and skills gained during the Preliminary Preparation program to design and implement a robust mentoring system as described in the following standards that helps each candidate work to meet the California Standards for the Teaching Profession.
Standard 2 – Components of a Mentoring Design: The Induction program’s mentoring design must be based on a sound rationale informed by theory and research, and must provide multiple opportunities for candidates to demonstrate growth in the California Standards for the Teaching Profession. The mentoring approach implemented by the program must include the development of an Individualized Learning Plan (ILP) for candidates based on needs determined by the teacher and the program provider, in consultation with the site administrator and guided by the Preliminary Program Transition Plan. The ILP must address identified candidate competencies that support the recommendation for the credential. Mentoring support for candidates must include both “just in time” and longer term analysis of teaching practice to help candidates develop enduring professional skills. The program’s design features both individually and as a whole must serve to strengthen the candidate’s professional practice and contribute to the candidate’s future retention in the profession.
Standard 3 – Designing and Implementing Individual Learning Plans within the Mentoring System: The Individualized Learning Plan (ILP) must address the California Standards for the Teaching Profession and provide the road map for candidate’s Induction work during their time in the program along with guidance for the mentor in providing support. The ILP must be collaboratively developed at the beginning of Induction by the candidate and the mentor, with input from the employer regarding the candidate’s job assignment, and guidance from the program staff. The ILP must include candidate professional growth goals, a description of how the candidate will work to meet these goals, defined and measurable outcomes for the candidate, and planned opportunities to reflect on progress and modify the ILP as needed. The candidate’s specific teaching assignment should provide the appropriate context for the development of the overall ILP; however, the candidate and the mentor may add additional goals based on the candidate’s professional interests such as, for example, advanced certifications, additional content area literacy, early childhood education, case management, evidence-based practices supportive of specific disabilities within the candidate’s caseload, consultation, collaboration, co-teaching, and collaborating with para-educators, and service providers. Within the ILP, professional learning and support opportunities must be identified for each candidate to practice and refine effective teaching practices for all students through focused cycles of inquiry. The program must assist the candidate and the mentor with assuring the availability of resources necessary to accomplish the ILP. The program must ensure dedicated time for regular mentor and candidate interactions, observations of colleagues and peers by the candidate, and other activities contained in the ILP. In addition, the mentoring process must support each candidate’s consistent practice of reflection on the effectiveness of instruction, analysis of student data and other outcomes data, and the use of these data to further inform the repeated cycle of planning and instruction. Within the ongoing mentoring interactions, the mentor must encourage and assist candidates to connect with and become part of the larger professional learning community within the profession.
Standard 4 – Qualifications, Selection and Training of Mentors: The Induction program assigns qualified mentors and provides guidance and clear expectations for the mentoring experience based on the program’s design. Qualifications for mentors must include but are not limited to
- Knowledge of the context and content area of the candidate’s teaching assignment;
- Demonstrated commitment to professional learning and collaboration
- Possession of a Clear Teaching Credential
- Ability, willingness, and flexibility to meet candidate needs for support
- Minimum of three years of effective teaching experience
Guidance and clear expectations for the mentoring experience provided by the program must include but are not limited to:
- Providing “just-in-time” support for candidates in accordance with the ILP, along with longer-term guidance to promote enduring professional skills
- Facilitation of candidate growth and development through modeling, guided reflection on practice through modeling, guided reflection on practice and feedback on classroom instruction
- Connecting candidates with available resources to support their professional growth and accomplishment of the ILP
- Periodically reviewing the ILP with candidates and making adjustments as needed
The program must provide ongoing training and support for mentors that includes but is not limited to:
- Coaching and mentoring
- Goal setting
- Use of appropriate mentoring instruments
- Best practices in adult learning
- Support for the individual mentoring challenges, reflection on mentoring practice, and opportunities to engage with mentoring peers in profession learning networks.
- Program processes designed to support candidate growth and effectiveness
Standard 5 – Determining Candidate Competence for the Clear Credential Recommendation: The Induction program must assess candidate progress towards mastery of the California Standards for the Teaching Profession to support the recommendation for the clear credential. The documentation of candidate progress must reflect the learning and professional growth goals indicated within the Individualized Learning Plan and evidence of the candidate’s successful completion of the activities outlined in the ILP. Prior to recommending a candidate for a clear credential, the Induction program sponsor must verify that the candidate has satisfactorily completed all program activities and requirements and that the program has documented the basis on which the recommendation for the clear credential is made. The program sponsor’s verification must be based on a review of observed and documented evidence, collaboratively assembled by the candidate, the mentor and/or other colleagues, according to the program’s design. The Induction program’s recommendation verification process must include a defensible process of reviewing documentation, a written appeal process for candidates, and a procedure for candidates to repeat portions of the program as needed.
Standard 6 – Program responsibilities for Assuring Quality of Program Services: The program must regularly assess the quality of services provided by mentors to candidates, using criteria that include candidate feedback, the quality and perceived effectiveness of support provided to candidates in implementing their Individualized Learning Plan, the opportunity to complete the full range of program requirements. Induction program leaders must provide formative feedback to mentors on their work, including establishment of collaborative relationships. Clear procedures must be in place for the reassignment of mentors, if the pairing of candidate and mentor is not effective. The program must provide a coherent overall system of support through the collaboration, communication, and coordination between candidates, mentors, school and district administrators.