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Title

Teacher induction: A case study of the Lodi New Teacher Project

Date of Award

1996

Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

Department

Education

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to provide a descriptive case study of the implementation of a school-based new teacher support program and its relationship to the existing culture and norms at the individual school sites. The study also investigated significant factors characteristic to new teacher support programs and their interactions, and the study analyzed a program as it evolved over a four-year period within the Lodi Unified School District. There were eighty-four subjects, of whom forty-nine responded to a survey. Eleven subjects from three school sites were interviewed in-depth following the survey. The survey consisted of questions about the subjects' educational and project background, their involvement with reflective practice, school culture, support for new teachers, and job difficulty, and the survey included a series of open-ended questions. The semi-structured interviews asked respondents to respond to difficulties faced as a new teacher and changes that occurred at the site because of the New Teacher Project. Research questions asked if the Lodi New Teacher Project provided effective support for new teachers; the program's effect on traditional school culture; the role of the administrator in changing site culture; elements that support new teachers; and if site-based programs help retain professionals in the field. Findings from the surveys, interviews, archival records, and observations showed that site-based induction practices promoted extremely positive relationships with colleagues, administrators, and district-office personnel. In addition, the activities supported new teacher needs of strong emotional support, providing materials and suggestions for instructional improvement and opportunities for shared leadership at each site. Research showed that positive changes in each school culture and expectations about professional relationships and collegiality increased. Emotional support was shown to be the single most important factor in new Teacher induction. The retention rate of new teachers involved with the Lodi New Teacher Project was over eighty-six percent after five years.

Pages

303

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