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REL Midwest Ask A REL Response

Educator Effectiveness

March 2018

Question:

What does the research say about new teacher academies and impact on first-year teacher retention? What states, districts, and regional service agencies are holding new teacher academies?



Response:

Following an established Regional Educational Laboratory (REL) Midwest protocol, we conducted a search for research reports, descriptive studies, and literature reviews on the relationship between new teacher academies and first-year teacher retention. In addition, we looked for resources that describe state policies regarding support for new teachers. For details on the databases and sources, keywords, and selection criteria used to create this response, please see the Methods section at the end of this memo.

Below, we share a sampling of the publicly accessible resources on this topic. The search conducted is not comprehensive; other relevant references and resources may exist. We have not evaluated the quality of references and resources provided in this response, but offer this list to you for your information only.

Research References

Appolloni, S. (2009). NSDC’s standards to the rescue: Focus on context, process, and content provides a strong foothold for mentor program. Journal of Staff Development, 30(5), 36–38, 40, 42. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ876335. Full text available at https://learningforward.org/publications/blog-landing/jsd/2009/12/30/jsd-december-2009-the-basic-ingredients

From the ERIC abstract: “Each year, 200 novice teachers arrive at the schools in a large district in Reno, Nevada. The district’s challenge is to create a comprehensive system of support for these teachers. For eight years, the district has provided a site-mentor for each of the novice teachers and required attendance in a two-year program of study as part of the New Teacher Academy. The Induction and Mentoring Program then added full-release mentors to the circle of support. This article describes how the district’s success unfolded when it turned to National Staff Development Council’s (NSDC’s) Standards for Staff Development for guidance in planning the new mentors’ professional learning.”

Beerer, K. M. (2002). District carves out time for new teachers to learn. Journal of Staff Development, 23(4), 46–49. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ660195. Full text available at https://learningforward.org/publications/blog-landing/jsd/2002/10/01/jsd-fall-2002-new-teachers

From the ERIC abstract: “One Pennsylvania school district requires that new teachers spend an additional 15 contractual days each year during their first 5 years of teaching in a comprehensive New Teacher Academy. They are also mentored during their first year. During those 15 days, teachers participate in workshops, personal choice staff development, graduate course work, and enrichment and/or mediation. Participants are very positive about the effort.”

Bland, P., Church, E., & Luo, M. (2014). Strategies for attracting and retaining teachers. Administrative Issues Journal: Connecting Education, Practice, and Research, 4(1). Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1058481

From the ERIC abstract: “Attracting and retaining high quality teachers is a challenge for many school districts. This is especially true in a time of increased accountability and limited resources. This report details best practice in the training, hiring, improvement, and retention of high quality teaching staff. The authors explain how school leaders can attract quality teaching staff, provide effective new teacher induction programs, and establish procedures that will assist in retaining the best of the best teaching staff.”

Glazerman, S., Isenberg, E., Dolfin, S., Bleeker, M., Johnson, A., Grider, M., & Jacobus, M. (2010). Impacts of comprehensive teacher induction: Final results from a randomized controlled study. NCEE 2010-4027. Jessup, MD: National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED565837

From the ERIC abstract: “In 2004, the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences contracted with Mathematica Policy Research to conduct a large-scale evaluation of comprehensive teacher induction. The purpose of the study was to determine whether augmenting the set of services districts usually provide to support beginning teachers with a more comprehensive program improves teacher and student outcomes. This is the study’s third and final report on the program’s impacts. This report compares retention, achievement, and classroom practices of teachers who were offered comprehensive induction services to teachers who were offered the support normally offered by the school. Teachers assigned to receive comprehensive induction for either one or two years were supported by a full-time mentor who received ongoing training and materials to support the teachers’ development. The teachers also were offered monthly professional development sessions and opportunities to observe veteran teachers. The teachers were followed for three years. Data was collected from 1,009 beginning teachers in 418 schools in 17 districts. Districts included in the study were not already offering comprehensive induction services, including paying for full-time mentors. Novice teachers in approximately half of the schools were assigned by lottery to receive comprehensive induction services. In 10 of the districts, these teachers were provided one year of comprehensive induction services; in the remaining 7 districts, the teachers were provided two years of services. Teachers in the schools not assigned to receive comprehensive induction services were provided the support normally offered to novice teachers by the school. Teacher practices were measured via classroom observations conducted in the spring of 2006. Data on teacher retention were collected via surveys administered in the fall of 2006, 2007, and 2008. Student test scores were collected from district administrative records for the 2005-06, 2006-07, and 2007-08 school years. Key findings include: (1) During the comprehensive induction program, treatment teachers received more support than control teachers; (2) The extra induction support for treatment teachers did not translate into impacts on classroom practices in the first year; (3) For teachers who received one year of comprehensive induction, there was no impact on student achievement; (4) For teachers who received two years of comprehensive induction, there was no impact on student achievement in the first two years. In the third year, there was a positive and statistically significant impact on student achievement; and (5) Neither exposure to one year nor exposure to two years of comprehensive induction had a positive impact on retention or other teacher workforce outcomes.”

Goldrick, L. (2016). Support from the start: A 50-state review of policies on new educator induction and mentoring. Santa Cruz, CA: New Teacher Center. Retrieved from https://newteachercenter.org/wp-content/uploads/2016CompleteReportStatePolicies.pdf

From the introduction: “New Teacher Center’s monitoring of state policies around support for new teachers and school principals began with our first report in 2012, using data primarily from the 2010-2011 school year. Our latest report—updated for the 2015-2016 school year—takes stock of policy changes over the last five years and summarizes what actions states have taken to strengthen on-the-job support for beginning educators.”

Hong, Y., & Hong, G. (2013). Making sense of the “zero effect” of comprehensive teacher induction programs: A mediational analysis. Evanston, IL: Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED563315

From the ERIC abstract: “Teachers new to the profession may face various challenges and struggle with pedagogy and classroom management. They tend to be less effective in boosting student learning than their more experienced colleagues (Murnane & Phillips, 1981; Raymond, Fletcher, & Luque, 2001; Rivkin, Hanusheck, & Kain, 2001). Since the early 1980s, there has been an increasing recognition of the importance of providing induction support in forms of mentoring programs, workshops, orientation seminars, collaboration opportunities, and other support systems to new teachers in their initial years of teaching (Furtwengler, 1995). At the present time, 27 states require some forms of induction or mentoring support for new teachers, 22 states mandate completion of or participation in an induction program for advanced teaching certification, and 17 states provide dedicated funding for teacher induction. While the general goal of teacher induction is to transform a student of teaching into a competent teacher of students, many evaluations in the past have focused on program impacts on novice teacher retention and professional well-being. Only a few studies have attended to instructional improvement as outcomes (see reviews by Ingersoll & Strong, 2011; Strong, 2009; Wang, Odell, & Schwille, 2008). Most studies (Davis & Higdon, 2008; Evertson & Smithey, 2000; Stanulis & Floden, 2009; Thompson, Paek, Goe, & Ponte, 2004) have suggested that more intensive mentoring and support from university-trained mentors might be associated with a higher rate of using effective instructional practices among new teachers. Yet one study (Roehrig, Bohn, Turner, & Pressley, 2008) reported that new teachers regardless of induction intensity declined in their use of effective teaching practices over the first year. These evaluations have been mostly non-experimental or quasi-experimental with a relatively small sample size. In contrast, a large-scale randomized study funded by the U.S. Department of Education and conducted by a research team from Mathematica Policy Research (Glazerman et. al, 2010) compared two prominent Comprehensive Teacher Induction (CTI) programs with standard district or school support for more than one thousand new teachers. Although teachers in the treatment group experienced more intensive, structured, and sequenced mentoring activities from trained external mentors, they exhibited surprisingly similar teaching practices as those in the control group in the spring of the first year such that a zero effect of the CTI programs was concluded. Reanalyzing data from the comprehensive teacher induction study, the authors aimed to unpack the zero effect of the CTI programs on teaching practices by closely examining the content and activities of mentoring as potential mediators of the induction program effects on teaching practices. The content of mentoring includes teaching planning and preparation, management of classroom environment, instructional content and pedagogy, and professional responsibilities. Key activities for mentees include keeping record and analysis of teaching and student learning, working with a study group of teachers, observing other teachers’ teaching, and meeting with local instructional leaders. The following questions were asked: (1) Did treatment teachers and control teachers have different experiences with mentoring content and activities? (2) Did the differences in mentoring experiences mediate the program effect on teaching practices? (3) Was receiving mentoring from external mentors in the CTI programs as effective as receiving mentoring from home-based mentors under the control condition? Preliminary analysis indicated that treatment teachers and control teachers had different experiences with mentoring content and activities. Clearly, beginning teachers assigned to the CTI programs tend to receive a higher dosage of induction content and a higher intensity of mentoring activities. Therefore, we can rule out the second explanation for the zero effect of the CTI programs given that the treatment teachers displayed an equal or higher rate of participation than did the control teachers. The authors did note that a higher level of participation rate in the treatment group apparently did not lead to superiority in teaching practices in comparison with the control group. One would wonder, had the treatment teachers participated in the CTI programs at a lower rate that becomes equal to the control teachers’ participation rate in their local induction programs, whether the teaching practices of the treatment group would become inferior to that of the control group.”

Ingersoll, R. M. (2012). Beginning teacher induction: What the data tell us. Phi Delta Kappan, 93(8), 47–51. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ997950

From the ERIC abstract: “Induction support programs for beginning teachers is an education reform whose time has come. The national data indicate that over the past couple of decades the number of beginning teachers has ballooned in the U.S. Simultaneously, there has been a large increase in the number of states, districts, and schools offering induction programs. Importantly, the data also indicate that induction can help retain teachers, improve their instruction and their students’ achievement. However, the data also tell us that the kinds and amounts of support greatly vary, and research suggests the effects depend on how much induction one gets and for how long.”

Note: REL Midwest was unable to locate a link to the full-text version of this resource. Although REL Midwest tries to provide publicly available resources whenever possible, it was determined that this resource may be of interest to you. It may be found through university or public library systems.

Ingersoll, R. M., & Strong, M. (2012). What the research tells us about the impact of induction and mentoring programs for beginning teachers. Yearbook of the National Society for the Study of Education, 111(2), 466–490. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ991012

From the ERIC abstract: “This chapter summarizes a comprehensive and critical review that the authors recently completed of empirical studies that evaluate the effects of induction on various outcomes. The review’s objective was to provide researchers, policy makers, and educators with a reliable and current assessment of what is known and not known about the effectiveness of teacher induction and mentoring programs. A second objective was to identify gaps in the research base and pinpoint relevant questions that have not been addressed and that warrant further research. Overall, most of the studies the authors have reviewed provide empirical support for the claim that induction for beginning teachers, and teacher mentoring programs in particular, has a positive impact. Most of the studies reviewed showed that beginning teachers who participated in some kind of induction had higher satisfaction, commitment, or retention. Likewise, for teachers’ classroom practices, most of the studies reviewed showed that beginning teachers who participated in some kind of induction performed better at various aspects of teaching, such as keeping students on task, developing workable lesson plans, using effective student questioning practices, adjusting classroom activities to meet students’ interests, maintaining a positive classroom atmosphere, and demonstrating successful classroom management. Finally, for student achievement, most of the studies reviewed showed that students of beginning teachers who participated in some kind of induction had higher scores, or gains, on academic achievement tests.”

Note: REL Midwest was unable to locate a link to the full-text version of this resource. Although REL Midwest tries to provide publicly available resources whenever possible, it was determined that this resource may be of interest to you. It may be found through university or public library systems.

Lesnick, J., Jiang, J., Sporte, S. E., Sartain, L., & Hart, H. (2010). A study of Chicago New Teacher Center induction coaching in Chicago Public Schools: 2009-2010. Chicago, IL: Consortium on Chicago School Research. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED519790

From the ERIC abstract: “To support new teachers during the challenging transition to the profession, schools and districts across the country often establish induction supports such as professional development, mentorship, and coaching. This report describes the findings of a research study designed to examine how the Chicago implementation of the New Teacher Center (NTC) induction model supports teachers who are new to the profession. As part of this model, CNTC provides beginning teachers in Chicago Public Schools with an individual coach who acts as an expert colleague. This study looks specifically at the ways in which coaches supported beginning teachers toward becoming autonomous professionals. The study was designed as a formative evaluation to inform the organizational knowledge and decision making at the Chicago New Teacher Center; as such, the findings are meant to be reflective and descriptive.”

National Association of State Boards of Education. (2012). NASBE discussion guide: Teacher induction: Improving state systems for supporting new teachers. Arlington, VA: Author. Retrieved from http://www.nasbe.org/project/teacher-induction/

From the introduction: “Effective teaching is the number one factor that influences student achievement after accounting for student characteristics. New teachers typically take from between three and five years to teach at a level that maximizes student growth and achievement. Despite these widely accepted findings, many new teachers entering the field do not receive the necessary support or feedback they need to ever develop into effective teachers. New teachers have a host of unique challenges associated with entering the profession beyond instruction in the classroom, such as translating theory from teacher preparation programs into practice, developing classroom management skills, and many times accomplishing these tasks in relative isolation.

To address these challenges, states and districts are increasingly using induction programs to help new teachers transition into a school and provide the critical support these teachers need to begin an effective teaching career. Comprehensive, high-quality teacher induction can accelerate professional growth and teacher effectiveness, reduce teacher turnover, and improve student learning. However, teacher induction involves much more than just assigning a mentor to a teacher as an informal ‘buddy’ to help orient them to a new school. Effective teacher induction provides systemic support to new teachers over at least two years, including opportunities for collaboration with peers, regular formative and evaluative assessment of progress based on state teaching standards, and professional development that is tailored to the challenges a new teacher faces.

Recognizing the importance of comprehensive teacher induction, NASBE and the New Teacher Center, a national non-profit dedicated to improving student achievement by accelerating the effectiveness of new teachers, partnered to develop a discussion guide for state boards of education and policymakers that provides up-to-date research on issues in teacher induction, elements of comprehensive teacher induction, examples of state-level action and a guiding framework for boards to conduct a meaningful conversation around teacher induction.”

Potemski, A., & Matlach, L. (2014). Supporting new teachers: What do we know about effective state induction policies? Policy snapshot. Washington, DC: Center on Great Teachers and Leaders. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED558029

From the ERIC abstract: “Finding effective ways to support all teachers—especially new and struggling teachers—has never been more critical. According to the U.S. Department of Education, approximately 419,000 new teachers will be hired in 2015 (National Center for Education Statistics, 2011). Estimates suggest that between 40 percent and 50 percent of these new teachers will leave the education workforce within five years (Ingersoll, 2012). Research suggests that induction programs can increase teacher retention rates—but this impact depends on the quality of supports provided (Ingersoll, 2012; Smith & Ingersoll, 2004). A systematic approach to induction ensures that new teachers have the resources and supports they need to be effective in the classroom. Although this topic has gained much traction in the literature and in states and districts across the country, states continue to seek guidance on how to leverage their resources to create high-quality induction and mentoring programs. In this Policy Snapshot, the authors summarize existing research about induction and identify important state policy considerations for building a systematic, comprehensive approach to teacher induction. This brief also provides considerations for differentiating supports for special educators and teachers of English language learners (ELLs), which are often hard-to-staff positions. Although federal and local policies also have potential for positive impact, this policy snapshot focuses on the role of state education agencies. To help support states in making policy decisions, practical examples of mentoring policies and programs are also included.”

What Works Clearinghouse. (2015). New Teacher Center Induction Model. What Works Clearinghouse Intervention Report. Princeton, NJ: Author. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED558152

From the ERIC abstract: “The ‘New Teacher Center (NTC) Induction Model’ is a systemic approach to support beginning teachers (i.e., teachers new to the profession). Based on the research, the ‘NTC Induction Model’ was found to have no discernible effects on teacher retention in the school district, teacher retention in the profession, or teacher retention at the school for beginning elementary school teachers after one year of implementation. The following are appended: (1) Research details for Glazerman et al., (2008); (2) Outcome measures for each domain; (3) Findings included in the rating for the teacher retention in the school district domain; (4) Findings included in the rating for the teacher retention in the profession domain; and (5) Findings included in the rating for the teacher retention at the school domain.”

Additional Organizations to Consult

Center on Great Teachers and Leaders at American Institutes for Research – http://www.gtlcenter.org/

From the website: “The Center on Great Teachers and Leaders (GTL Center) is dedicated to supporting state education leaders in their efforts to grow, respect, and retain great teachers and leaders for all students. The GTL Center continues the work of the National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality (TQ Center) and expands its focus to provide technical assistance and online resources designed to build systems that:

  • Support the implementation of college and career standards.
  • Ensure the equitable access of effective teachers and leaders.
  • Recruit, retain, reward, and support effective educators.
  • Develop coherent human capital management systems.
  • Create safe academic environments that increase student learning through positive behavior management and appropriate discipline.
  • Use data to guide professional development and improve instruction.”

New Teacher Center – https://newteachercenter.org

From the website: “New Teacher Center is a national non-profit organization dedicated to improving student learning by guiding a new generation of educators. We have made it our mission to overcome challenges teachers and students face by providing all educators with the support and resources necessary to succeed from their first day to their last.

By working in conjunction with school districts, state policymakers and educators from across the country to increase the effectiveness of teachers and school leaders at all levels, NTC has developed a series of results-oriented programs that align with district learning goals and address teacher induction, instructional coaching and school leadership development. All of these programs take place on premises within local school environments.”

Methods

Keywords and Search Strings

The following keywords and search strings were used to search the reference databases and other sources:

  • New Teacher Academy

  • New Teacher Academies

  • Teacher induction programs

  • New Teacher Center model

  • Beginning teacher induction

  • Teacher Mentoring and Induction Program

Databases and Search Engines

We searched ERIC for relevant resources. ERIC is a free online library of more than 1.6 million citations of education research sponsored by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES). Additionally, we searched IES and Google Scholar.

Reference Search and Selection Criteria

When we were searching and reviewing resources, we considered the following criteria:

  • Date of the publication: References and resources published over the last 15 years, from 2002 to present, were include in the search and review.

  • Search priorities of reference sources: Search priority is given to study reports, briefs, and other documents that are published or reviewed by IES and other federal or federally funded organizations.

  • Methodology: We used the following methodological priorities/considerations in the review and selection of the references: (a) study types—randomized control trials, quasi-experiments, surveys, descriptive data analyses, literature reviews, policy briefs, and so forth, generally in this order, (b) target population, samples (e.g., representativeness of the target population, sample size, volunteered or randomly selected), study duration, and so forth, and (c) limitations, generalizability of the findings and conclusions, and so forth.
This memorandum is one in a series of quick-turnaround responses to specific questions posed by educational stakeholders in the Midwest Region (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Wisconsin), which is served by the Regional Educational Laboratory (REL Region) at American Institutes for Research. This memorandum was prepared by REL Midwest under a contract with the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences (IES), Contract ED-IES-17-C-0007, administered by American Institutes for Research. Its content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of IES or the U.S. Department of Education nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.