Date of Award

2013

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EDD)

Degree Program

Educational Leadership

Department

College of Education

First Advisor

Priscilla Boerger

Second Advisor

Marilyn Schiavo

Third Advisor

Kathleen Weigel

Abstract

Feelings of isolation and defeat experienced by many novice teachers during their initial years have caused them to leave the profession before they are able to impact students' academic performance. The School District of Palm Beach County, afflicted by the cyclic trend of having to recruit and retrain beginning teachers, partnered with the New Teacher Center in 2009 to implement a mentor-based induction program. The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of the support provided by the district's mentor-based program on teacher retention as it compared to the support provided by school-based mentoring. A quasi-experimental design was used to determine whether there were any differences between teachers who participated in the district's mentor-based program and those who participated in a school-based program; specifically, teachers' induction program experiences and the likelihood of teacher retention. The results of the study suggest that demographics had no significance on the teachers' perception of their induction program. Furthermore, data from the survey indicate that although teachers who were assigned full-release mentors had a more positive experience during their beginning years as professionals their decision to remain in the profession was not greater than those who were assigned school-based mentors. On the contrary, results fiom the focus group imply that mentees with full-released mentors were more content with their work environment and were more likely to remain in the classroom longer in comparison to their colleagues supported by school-based mentors.

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