• The State of Induction and Mentoring in Indiana K-12 Public Schools

      Hilton, Christina Lee
      The purpose of this study was to examine how school corporation officials in Indiana’s K-12 public schools support first and second year teachers through induction and mentoring practices. An analysis was made to determine the adequacy of novice teacher support based on state and national recommendations for effective induction and mentoring practices. The collected data was analyzed to determine if the level of support that Indiana school corporation officials provide novice teachers differed due to student enrollment and/or school location (i.e. rural or urban/suburban) across the 2009/10 school year to the 2010/11 school year. A self-administered survey, Indiana School Corporation Induction and Mentoring Survey, was designed specifically for this study, and included statements based on state and federal recommendations for supporting novice teachers as well as the National Center for Educational Statistics’ Schools and Staffing Survey and the Teacher Follow-up Survey. The survey was sent to all 293 Indiana K-12 Public School Superintendents. The sample consisted of 112 completed surveys, which equated to an overall response rate of 38.2%. The data was analyzed based upon two enrollment categories, 2,000 or fewer students and 2,001+ students. Fifty-five respondents indicated enrollments of 2,000 or fewer (49%), while 57 indicated enrollments of 2,001+ (51%). The data was also analyzed by location, rural and suburban/urban with 69 respondents (62%) indicating a rural location and 43 respondents (48%) indicating a suburban/urban location. Data analysis revealed no significant differences between novice teacher support through mentoring and induction by enrollment or location. There was, however, a significant difference in the amount of support provided to novice teachers from the 2009/10 school year (more support) to the 2010/11 school year (less support). Additionally, superintendents were asked to report the average number of new teachers hired in the past five years and the number of new teachers they expected to hire for the 2010/11 school year. Superintendents were also asked if the IDOE’s revocation of the mentor component of IMAP and/or the recent budget shortfall impacted the assignment of mentors to novice teachers. School corporation officials reported a reduction in the number of new teachers hired in the previous five years (mean, 14.90) as compared to the number of new teachers expected to be hired for the 2010/11 school year (mean, 6.88). The majority of the respondents (n = 71, 63.4%) indicated that they had not or did not plan to change their assignment of mentors to novice teachers due to the IDOE’s revocation of the mentor requirement. The majority of the respondents (n = 64, 57.1%) indicated that they had not or did not plan to change their assignment of mentors to novice teachers due to the recent budget shortfall.