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Mentoring Program

Coordinator Pre K-5: Kelly McAvoy

Tephone: 781-314-5720 ext. 11210

Coordinator 6-12: Tom Grinnell 
Telephone: 781-314-5440 ext. 7708

For all Mentoring documents click here. 

Mentor Calendars

Mission Statement

The Waltham Public Schools is committed to a mentor program to enhance student learning by promoting the personal and professional growth of our educators.  The mentor program will foster collegiality, encourage effective instructional practices, and create a culture of support within a community of learners.

Goals

 1.  To provide non-evaluative and confidential support to teachers new to the Waltham Public Schools.
 2.  To improve teaching and learning.
 3.  To reduce concerns and attempt to overcome challenges common to new staff.
 4.  To foster collegiality and congeniality.
 5.  To offer opportunities for professional staff to analyze and reflect upon the best practices in teaching and learning and to enhance the development of outstanding teaching skills.
  6.  To ensure the retention of quality teachers.

Who Needs to be mentored?

The Waltham Public Schools provides an induction program for teachers in their first year of teaching and/or first year in the district.  The WPS induction program consists of a two day New Teacher Orientation and two years of being mentored.  There are two categories of teachers when it comes to induction - beginning teachers and incoming teachers. A beginning teacher is an educator who is new to the profession.  An incoming teacher is an educator who is new to our school system but has experience from another district.  If an incoming teacher was not previously mentored, he/she will be assigned a mentor.  Incoming teachers who have been previously mentored or have attained their professional license will be matched with a liaison at the school in which they are employed.

Will teachers who are hired after January 1st be mentored?

No formal mentoring will take place for new teachers hired after January 1. Their induction year of mentoring will begin the following school year.

How will mentors be matched with new teachers?

Mentors and beginning teachers will be ideally matched by the following priority list:

 1. Same grade in building (K-5)
 2. Subject (secondary & departmentally affiliated staff)
 3. Compatible schedules
 4. Close proximity location

The Mentor Coordinators, building principal and/or director will match mentors and beginning teachers no later than mid-August.  If hired after mid-August, a mentor will be assigned as soon as feasible.

How long will teachers be mentored?

New teachers to the profession who possess initial certification will be mentored for 70 hours in year one. Teachers who possess initial certification will be mentored an additional 50 hours in year two. The number of hours required for new teachers is in accordance with Massachusetts Department of Education regulations for new teacher induction programs.

Mentors will:

  • Assist the beginning/incoming teachers in analyzing student data and reflecting on professional practice to generate Student Learning and Professional Goals and create a Developing Educator Plan as part of our Educator Evaluation System
  • Meet (both formally and informally) during the school year to reflect on effective practice and plan curriculum units and lessons
  • Analyze and assess the beginning/incoming teacher's instructional practice in relation to evaluation criteria in order to help the educator reflect and improve

Key Components of the WPS Mentor Program:

  • Mentor Agreement
  • Mentor Log
  • 4 Mentor Meetings (Year 1 mentees only)
  • Year 1 - 70 hours of mentor/mentee working together
  • Year 2 - 50 hours of mentor/mentee working together
  • 25 hours of liaison/mentee working together
  • 3 full observations of mentor observing mentee and vice-versa (both years) with feedback
  • 3 brief observations of mentor observing mentee and vice-versa (both years) with feedback
  • 2 brief "Peer" observations of mentee (both years) by another teacher with feedback
  • Year 2 mentee portfolio

Who needs to be “Liaison” mentored?

Incoming teachers who have been previously mentored or have attained their professional license will be matched with a liaison at the school in which they are employed. 

Liaison Mentors will perform the same responsibilities as other mentors with the added focus of assisting the previously mentored/professional licensed incoming teacher get acclimated to the building/department/district’s procedures.

Key Components of the Liaison Mentorship:

  • Mentor Agreement
  • Mentor Log
  • 25 hours of liaison/mentee working together
  • 1 full observation of mentor observing mentee and vice-versa with feedback
  • 1 brief observation of mentor observing mentee and vice-versa with feedback
  • 1 brief “Peer” observation of mentee by another teacher with feedback

 


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