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Eric.ed.gov – Mentoring Early Career Teachers in Urban Alaska: Impact Findings from the Investing in Innovation (i3) Evaluation of the Alaska Statewide Mentor Project Urban Growth Opportunity

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In 2011, the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) received an Investing in Innovation (i3) Grant through the U.S. Department of Education. UAF applied for the grant to expand the predominantly rural-serving Alaska Statewide Mentor Project (ASMP) to urban settings. ASMP is a professional development initiative that supplies fully released, highly trained mentors to early career teachers (ECTs). UAF’s i3 grant, The Urban Growth Opportunity (UGO), included five districts: Anchorage, Fairbanks North Star Borough, Kenai Peninsula Borough, Matanuska-Susitna Borough, and Sitka. This is the final report for the grant conducted over four years (2011 2012 to 2014 2015). The research team randomly assigned 556 ECTs to treatment (UGO) and business as usual (BAU) groups. UGO ECTs received an ASMP mentor for two years; BAU ECTs received their districts’ business as usual support that varied by district and included content coaches without mentoring support and non-ASMP instructional mentoring support. Researchers conducted impact, implementation, and intervention studies. The impact study included seven outcomes: teacher retention; teacher instructional practice as measured by the three Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS®) domains (Emotional Support, Classroom Organization, and Instructional Support); and student achievement in reading, writing, and mathematics as measured by the state assessment. While UGO ECTs were retained as teachers in Alaska public schools at higher rates than BAU ECTs, the difference was not statistically significant. There were no statistically significant differences between UGO and BAU ECTs on instructional practices as measured by CLASS®. Finally, student achievement was generally higher for students of UGO ECTs, but differences in achievement were statistically significant only for some student groups: primary reading students and secondary math students who were White, Hispanic, Alaskan Native, or two or more races. Results from the implementation study, conducted over three of the four years of implementation, found ASMP implemented UGO with fidelity across all components: mentor recruitment and assignment, mentor participation in professional development, mentor interaction with their ECTs, and mentors’ use of formative assessment tools. Results from the intervention study identified two types of mentor-mentee dyads: Gliders and Sliders, with gliders engaging in longer conversations, focused more explicitly on instruction and students, responding to each other more often, and engaging as peers more frequently than the slider dyads.

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Troels Gannerup Christensen

Jeg er ansat som adjunkt hos Læreruddannelsen i Jelling, hvor jeg underviser i matematik, specialiseringsmodulet teknologiforståelse, praktik m.m. Jeg har tidligere været ansat som pædagogisk konsulent i matematik og tysk hos UCL ved Center for Undervisningsmidler (CFU) i Vejle og lærer i udskolingen (7.-9. klasse) på Lyshøjskolen i Kolding. Jeg er ejer af og driver bl.a. hjemmesiderne www.lærklokken.dk og www.iundervisning.dk, ggbkursus.dk og er tidligere fagredaktør på matematik på emu.dk. Jeg går ind for, at læring skal være let tilgængelig og i størst mulig omfang gratis at benytte.

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