Monday, January 12, 2015

Successful People Never Reach Goals Alone

How did your initial teacher training prepare you? What would you like Teacher Ed programs to provide now?

I still believe in the power of mentors. They provide a personal contact for new and returning teacher and can be the difference between a great experience or a teacher possibly leaving the profession. I have been a mentor for many teachers and working with them always provides me with opportunities to learn new things and also to re-adjust my focus on doing what's right for the students. I had an amazing mentor many years ago who continued to guide me throughout the years, without pay, unofficially. In fact, some of the best lessons that I learned from him were much later in my teaching career. And that brings me to another points, those lessons that I learned from him were later in my career which means I stayed around the teaching profession because there was a network of support and guidance around me.

Having strong professional programs in place for teachers will help to retain them. And we need teachers. Strong, confident, resourceful teachers. Administrations need to continue to work towards giving team teachers, mentor teachers, grade-level teachers time together during the day to gather, discuss and re-work lesson plans and instruction. They need to work towards more team time during the day and allowing flexibility during institute days and late starts. Just let teachers be, to do what they need to do, to develop relationships with students and each other so that we all stay in school and be the best we can be.    

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