Mentoring Regulations

District Mentoring and Induction Plan: Timelines and Guidance for 2008 - 2011

The mentoring regulations (N.J.A.C. 6A:9-8) place the responsibility for the development of district mentoring plans with the Local Professional Development Committee (LPDC). The toolkit, Mentoring for Quality Induction, published in 2005, is a resource for districts that provides guidance in the development, implementation and approval of mentoring and induction programs in New Jersey. The district committee will need to use the toolkit in the revision of the district mentoring plan. The entire toolkit is available to all districts, charter schools, and nonpublic schools online at http://www.nj.gov/education/njpep/pd/mentor_toolkit/index.html . Mentoring plans should provide evidence of activities that enable the novice teacher to develop and implement lessons, develop relevant classroom management strategies, understand and utilize formative and summative assessments to guide student learning, and engage in opportunities to see effective classroom practices modeled by others.

New Requirements Adopted Since the Creation of the Previous District Plan

On May 1, 2006, amendments to N.J.A.C. 6A:9 were placed in regulation which have a direct effect on mentoring requirements and the work of the LPDC in developing mentoring plans. In summary, these are:

  • The definition of a “novice teacher” was changed to ensure that any full-time or part-time teacher who has not completed one year of full-time teaching under a valid state teaching certificate will be mentored. (N.J.A.C.6A:9.2) This provision specifically ensures that all novice special education teachers receive one full year of mentoring support.

  • Each local mentoring plan must include a comprehensive plan for the 20-day clinical experience that ensures intensive mentoring and support for those in the alternate route to teacher certification program as outlined in the August 15, 2006, memo from then Acting Assistant Commissioner Jay Doolan. This letter provides districts with specific options for complying with the 20-day requirement.

    The use of retired teachers and administrators for the mentoring of novice teachers was removed from the licensing code. Retired teachers and administrators may no longer be used to satisfy any provision of the mentoring regulations for teachers (N.J.A.C.6A:9-8.4).

On January 7, 2008, the following additional amendments to regulations governing mentoring were made effective:

  • A novice teacher must be assigned a mentor at the beginning of the contracted teaching assignment (N.J.A.C. 6A:8-4(b)2).

  • The local mentor plan must include a structure for in-person contact between the mentor and novice teachers over a period of 30 weeks (N.J.A.C. 6A:9-8.4(b)3).

  • The mentor plan must first be approved by the local board of education, with final approval from the county superintendent (N.J.A.C. 6A: 9-8.4(c)4).

Use of the Mentoring for Quality Induction Toolkit

The Mentoring for Quality Induction Toolkit guides New Jersey public and nonpublic schools, districts and charter schools in the revision or development of a district mentoring plan. Mentoring plans must be aligned with the New Jersey Professional Standards for Teachers, provide induction and mentoring supports that enhance the novice’s ability to make sound instructional decisions within the New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards, and support multiple learning opportunities designed to enhance the delivery of instruction to students for those involved in the mentoring program.

The LPDC should use the templates in Folder 2: The District Mentoring Plan as the basis for writing the plan. All components as described in Folder 2: The District Mentoring Plan, should be included in the plan. Folder 2 may be accessedon the New Jersey Department of Education website http://www.nj.gov/education/njpep/pd/mentor_toolkit/folder_two/index.html or by referring to the toolkit provided to each Local Professional Development Committee. The templates provided for plan development include a checklist for identifying key components (Folder 2, Resource 8), district profile sheets, the rubric for the assessment of the plan, suggested mentor application forms and mentor contracts, and planning documents for training programs. Additional folders in the mentoring toolkit provide LPDCs with pertinent research, information and templates to support the implementation of the plan.

Mentoring for Alternate Route

Teachers – 20-Day Intensive Mentoring

The mentoring plan must include clearly articulated activities for the initial 20 - 30 days of employment of alternate route provisional teachers immediately after they begin work in the classroom. As you develop this component of the mentoring plan for those teachers who must undergo the 20 days of intensive mentoring, please consider the following activities: daily face-to-face mentoring, frequent classroom visitations by the mentor with appropriate feedback, and classroom visitations of novice teachers to experienced teachers for specified skill development. These activities should equal 90 hours of intensive mentoring. A summer orientation program for novice teachers may be counted as a part of the total 90 hours.

Summary of State Regulations in Meeting District Mentoring Requirements

Districts needing additional technical assistance or that have not yet received a mentoring toolkit may request the kit by emailing the request to mentoring@doe.state.nj.us . In the email, please provide the name of the Local Professional Development Committee Chair, the district name and the address.

The following is a summary of minimum program requirements that must be included within the plan:

  • District plans must provide a rigorous mentoring process for novice teachers.
  • District plans must ensure that mentors receive comprehensive mentor training.
  • In the absence of state funds, novice teachers must pay the mentoring stipend, unless the district provides other alternatives. The mentor stipend is a certification requirement for all novice teachers.
  • The mentoring stipend for traditional route teachers is $550 for 30 weeks of mentoring.
  • The mentoring stipend for alternate route teachers is $450 for the 20-day clinical experience and $550 for the remaining 30 weeks of mentoring. 
  • State funds, when available, will be distributed equitably in the spring to districts that have reported their novice teachers in the November collection of mentoring information by the coordinator of the Provisional Teacher Program. The funds that are dispersed are to be used to reimburse either the novice teacher if he/she pays the mentoring stipend or the district if it pays the stipend.
  • The effectiveness of the mentoring plan will be reported every three years through the district monitoring process in the Quality Single Accountability Continuum (QSAC). In addition, the district must submit an annual report on the effectiveness of the mentoring program to the county superintendent. Districts may access the information required in QSAC in the Personnel section of the QSAC District Performance Reviews. These indicators and the evidence that must be available for monitoring purposes may be accessed at http://www.state.nj.us/education/genfo/qsac/ on page 16 of the Personnel section.

Timelines

The following timelines should be followed for the 2008 – 2011 mentoring plan:

  • June 15, 2008 : Deadline for the Local Professional Development Committees to submit a complete District Mentoring Plan for the 2008 - 2011 school years to the Board of Education (BOE).
    • The following documentation must be provided to the BOE with the plan:
      • The district profile sheet (Folder 2, Resource 9); and
      • The LPDC sign-off sheet (Folder 2, Resource 11); and
      • A copy of the comment form for BOE comments (Folder 2, Resource 12).
      • August 1, 2008 : Deadline for the BOE to approve the mentoring plan and submit it on to the county superintendent for final approval
      • September 1, 2008 : Deadline for the county superintendent to provide final approval of the district mentoring plan. The county superintendent must notify the chief school administrator, the district board of education and the local professional development committee of the approval. If the district is required to make revisions to the plan based on feedback from the county superintendent, the district will have 30 days from date of notification to resubmit the plan.
      • September 2008 – September 2011: All districts will provide mentoring to all novice teachers in their districts based on the district mentoring plan and the regulations that govern mentoring.