- Year 2019
- NSF Noyce Award # 1555634
- First Name Debra
- Last Name Poese
- Discipline Other: Multiple STEM
Glenda.Baca@montgomerycollege.edu; Hello.Zwi@montgomerycollege.edu; Nevart.Tahmazian@montgomerycollege.edu
The Montgomery College Noyce: Excellent Teachers for STEM (MC NEXT STEM) program provides $16,000 stipends to STEM professionals who have a baccalaureate or post-baccalaureate STEM degree and are accepted for enrollment in the Alternative Certification for Effective Teachers (ACET) program, a partnership with Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) through the MC Workforce Development & Continuing Education division. The program includes a three-month Teaching Institute and an eight-week internship, followed by a one-year teaching residency in MCPS with full pay and benefits. Following a successful resident year, candidates then receive full Maryland teacher certification and continue teaching in MCPS. This program moves STEM professionals quickly and effectively into classrooms in high need areas.
The primary evaluation questions to be addressed are these: 1. Does an increased availability of funding support increase the diversity of the candidate pool, participants and completers? 2. Which program modifications are effective in retaining program participants through to the residency phase?
In order to help more candidates move successfully through this accelerated and rigorous program, a teamed coaching approach was used during the current academic year for support. Each coach is a certified teacher in the content area matching that of the teacher’s mentees, working with one to four candidates. The coaches were provided training at the beginning of the program to set the expectations for their work. Activities involved in the coaching process included: Supporting coordination with school observations for their mentees; Providing opportunities for small group engagement in classrooms; Giving feedback and guidance as necessary to teacher candidates; Supporting candidates with questions, success plans and lesson planning (approx. 1-2 hours per candidate during the program phase) Dr. Glenda Baca, co-PI for the MC NEXT STEM grant, was the driving force behind the creation and implementation of the project.
Lesson presentations and other project based assessments have already begun to show the effectiveness of the use of coaches in improving the starting skills of these new teachers. We continue to review the value in retention of the candidate through the internship and residency as we move forward.
The broader impacts of the project are to continue to model a program to quickly move STEM professionals into STEM teaching with a high level of skill at entry. Our next steps are to amplify our research on teaching effectiveness of the candidates as we accrue a sample size sufficient to do such analysis.