Term of Award

Summer 2001

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Administration

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Committee Chair

Michael D. Richardson

Committee Member 1

T. C. Chan

Committee Member 2

Cathy S. Jording

Committee Member 3

Fred Page

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to descriptively analyze new teacher induction programs across the state of Georgia regarding the support programs school districts provided for new teachers. Subjects for this study were 500 randomly selected Georgia teachers who completed their first year of teaching during the 1999-2000 school year. Participation in this study required that the subjects complete and return a survey developed in 1990 by Dr. Shelby Talley and modified by the researcher for this study. There were 327 surveys returned with a collective response rate of 65.4%.

This study found that induction practices to socialize new teachers in Georgia wer weak in the areas of providing building tours, introducing the novices to building personnel, securing housing and providing information about the community. Most teachers were assigned mentors, but many were described by survey participants as ineffective, unavailable, and as teaching in a different grade level. Data regarding assignment factors revealed that most teachers were assigned to teaching positions reflective of their training and education and were assigned to a classroom rather than "floating" between classrooms. However, this study's results verified that special considerations are not common in the state of Georgia regarding the types of students assigned to new teachers, reduction in workloads, or reduction in class sizes.

Regarding the professional needs of teachers, most new teachers were provided adequate information about the evaluation process, appropriate feedback regarding their performance, and school norms were clearly communicated. However, the majority of new teachers were not provided with curricula in a timely manner, new teacher handbooks, or opportunities to observe others and to be observed.

The majority of new teachers surveyed in the state of Georgia, 41.3%, recommended continuing the induction program in their school districts with minor modifications. There were 19% of the participants who recommended major modifications to the program, and 7% recommended replacing the existing program completely. There were 443 qualitative responses received from participants identifying concerns, needs, and suggestions for future program improvement.

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