From generic to specific mentoring: A five-factor model for developing primary teaching practices
Educators (Mullen, Cox, Boettcher, & Adoue, 1997) have pushed for new patterns of mentoring within teacher education. Ramsey (2000) claimed that teacher quality was not a priority for universities and employers, as they were largely disconnected with regard to coordinating the development of preservice teachers. Recommendation 14 of his report states that teacher education should “expand, as a priority, current professional development initiatives which equip educational leaders and mentors with the knowledge and skills to fulfil their roles in the induction of new members‿ (p. 208). Not surprisingly, preservice education appears to hold the key for changing practice towards inclusions of education reform (Briscoe & Peters, 1997), and may be the most influential stage to target towards achieving effective teaching practices (e.g., Appleton & Kindt, 1999; Watters & Ginns, 2000). Mentoring can be a change agent but will require further initiatives from universities and school-based mentors to more effectively guide preservice primary teachers in specific subject areas. Indeed, for primary school based mentors to be more effective in their practices, mentoring programs need to focus on specific objectives for developing specific teaching practices.