The state should require effective induction for all new teachers, with special emphasis on teachers in high-needs schools.
Maine requires that all new teachers receive mentoring. The state's induction program mandates that mentors be assigned to new teachers for a period of two years.
Mentors are chosen by a school leadership committee comprised of faculty, in which the principal has input. All mentors must have at least three years of experience and must successfully complete the state-approved training program. Although it is not required that mentors have experience in grade level and subject matter similar to the new teachers, the committee does consider grade level, content, location and compatibility of individual style.
Mentor compensation is not specified, but standards provide that "incentives exist for mentors." Standards also require that adequate time is provided for mentors and new teachers to meet weekly and "observe in the classroom periodically." An evaluation of the program is conducted annually by the induction committee.
Maine's Guide to New Educator Induction http://www.maine.gov/education/teacherinduction/forms/inductionguide.pdf Maine Chapter 118 Guidance http://www.maine.gov/education/teacherinduction/ch118.html
Expand guidelines to include other key areas.
While still leaving districts flexibility, Maine should articulate minimum guidelines for a high-quality induction experience. The state should require that mentors spend sufficient time with new teachers, especially in the first critical weeks of school.
Maine recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.