01 About the program
If you are hiring a new teacher (Associate) through the Leadership Development Program, you are also committing to providing your Associate with a School Mentor who offers on-the-ground contextual support at the school. The School Mentor is an experienced teacher already working at your school, who benefits from comprehensive mentorship training from Teach For Australia.
The School Mentor is a vital part of an Associate’s support and development network, which aims to set new teachers up for success from the very beginning and improve their chances of staying in the profession over the long term.
Our Mentor Development Program has been designed to build best-practice skills and knowledge for effective mentoring, to ensure the success of Associates and improve student outcomes. Selected by school principals, School Mentors observe Associate teaching, provide reflective feedback and collaborate with the Associate’s broader support network.
02 Benefits of mentoring and mentorship
Mentoring helps to nurture early career teachers in the beginning stages of their professional growth. Research has consistently found that new teachers experience a range of benefits from quality mentoring relationships, including emotional support, increased confidence, improved self-reflection, problem-solving capabilities and the development of classroom management practices and norms.
These benefits provide a strong foundation for mentees to begin growing as teachers and to become increasingly effective in the classroom. The relationship is mutually beneficial, with mentors also reporting benefits to their own development and learning.
Effective mentoring practices are developed through an evidence-based professional learning curriculum. Designed to build best-practice skills and knowledge for effective mentoring, the program supports mentor teachers’ professional growth through:
- Learning modules
- Regional professional learning communities
- Collaborative practice
As part of a professional learning community, mentors will:
- Construct the vision and values of their community and develop its function and communication practices throughout the two-year relationship
- Discuss the challenges and opportunities of mentoring with regional colleagues and build professional networks
- Practice reflective professional inquiry, sharing their goals, progress and learnings with the community
- Form part of a broader network of professional learning communities that organise professional learning opportunities for schools across their region and with other regions