Contrary to popular wisdom, new teachers’ biggest job complaint is not low pay. According to a survey report by Public Agenda, they’re more interested in getting better on-the-job support.
The report, based on interviews with 641 first-year teachers, found that nearly 80 percent of new teachers would rather work in a school where administrators gave strong support and backing to teachers than in one that paid a significantly higher salary.
New high school teachers were less likely than new elementary school teachers to be satisfied with the level of administrative support they receive, as well as with the help they get from colleagues and mentors on lesson plans and classroom management. The findings raise concerns “about the number of brand new [high school] teachers who seem to have been left dangling in challenging new jobs,” said Jean Johnson, Public Agenda’s executive vice president and director of education insights.
A version of this article appeared in the March 01, 2008 edition of Teacher PD Sourcebook