Teacher induction in Australia : a sample of what’s really happening
Interim Citation: **** Open access copy of this article can be accessed from the journal's webpage - see Official URL above. ****
Retention rates and stress levels of beginning teachers are of concern. Well-planned induction programs can assist beginning teachers to make the transition successfully into the profession, which may increase retention rates. This qualitative, year-long study aims to explore and describe the induction experiences of eight beginning teachers as they negotiated their first year of teaching. Data gathered through interviews and emails indicated that these teachers required further development on: catering for individual differences, assessing in terms of outcomes, relating to parents, relating to the wider community, and understanding school policies; however, relating to students and understanding legal responsibilities and duty of care were not issues. At the conclusion of their first year only one beginning teacher was assisted by a mentor (veteran teacher) on whole-school programming, and planning for improving teaching with opportunities to visit other classrooms. This was also the only beginning teacher who received a reduced workload in order to meet with the mentor to discuss pedagogical developments. The inadequate support provided to beginning teachers in this study highlights the need for principals and school staff to reassess induction processes, which includes providing time, funding, mentoring support and clear guidelines for a quality induction program.