Department

School of Education

Degree

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Chair

Grania Homan

Primary Subject Area

Education, General; Education, Teacher Training; Education, Sociology of; Education, Administration

Keywords

Attrition, Leadership, Mentoring Programs, Retention, Teacher Induction

Disciplines

Education | Educational Administration and Supervision | Human Resources Management | Teacher Education and Professional Development | Work, Economy and Organizations

Abstract

This study explored the issue of mentoring and its problems in aiding in the induction of new teachers into various school systems. Such a study is justified because teacher shortages remain a real threat in many areas of this country. The research sought to demonstrate that a mentor program without clear guidelines and accountability may actually damage new teachers. Some of the goals of a mentoring program were considered: the suitability and selection of mentors, the training of mentors, and program evaluation. A review of the literature included such topics as the high cost of attrition, the needs of new teachers, effective and practical mentoring methods, mentoring disasters, technology and creative ways to mentor, benefits to veteran teachers from mentoring, and the role of leadership in mentoring. A quantitative study of school districts with either very high or low teacher attrition rates sought to reveal what adjustments are necessary for greater teacher retention. A twenty-question survey that measured the perceptions and attitudes of administrators from these districts endeavored to answer some key questions such as why some mentoring programs fail, what mentors are actually doing, and how administrators could strengthen their programs.