Published: January 14, 2008

Mentoring Support for New Teachers

Quality Counts 2008: Tapping into Teaching introduces a redesigned framework for policy indicators related to the teaching profession. A major focus of this new framework is state efforts to build and support effective teaching throughout a teacher's career. The EPE Research Center's annual state policy survey, which was conducted for the report, investigated state activity related to mentoring as one area in which states can build and support teacher capacity.

The report found that 25 states require and finance mentoring for all beginning teachers and 20 of those states have some form of mentoring program standards for selecting, training, and/or matching mentors to novice teachers. But some states are more active than others in terms of the different types of standards they have implemented related to their mentoring requirements.

State Standards for Mentoring

This stat of the week examines the number of policies each state has in place based on the following indicators: State has standards for selecting mentors; state has standards for mentor training or requires a specific training program for all mentors; and state has standards for matching mentors and beginning teachers.

State policies for the selection of mentors were the most common form of mentoring standards, with 19 states having those in place. Fourteen states have mentor training standards while only 10 states have standards for matching mentors and mentees. A majority of the states with any form of mentoring standards had more than one of the policies examined in place, with 7 states having all three forms of standards. Requiring beginning teachers to participate in a mentoring program may be an important part of supporting new teachers, but ensuring those programs meet standards may also be an essential component in developing teacher capacity.

For more state-by-state information on state mentoring policies, please see the EPE Research Center's Education Counts database.

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