- Year 2022
- NSF Noyce Award # 1758385
- First Name Elizabeth
- Last Name Edmondson
- Discipline Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Mathematics, Other:Earth Science, Physics
Aimee Ellington, Lachelle Waller
Elizabeth Edmondson, VCU
VCU Noyce Track 1 Phase III incorporates a monthly induction meeting model to support and retain our Noyce novice teachers. These efforts are critical for these teachers working when working in stressful high-needs schools. In addition, the current shortage of highly qualified secondary science and mathematics teachers is linked to low retention rates. Of particular note, Ingersoll (2007) argued that the shortage of science and mathematics teachers is due to the large number of teachers (40-50%) who leave the profession within their first five years of teaching. Ingersoll (2007), supported by Linda Darling-Hammond et al. (2016), identified several contributing factors including low salaries, lack of support from school administrations, student discipline problems, and the lack of teacher input into school decision making. We are investigating the impact of the VCU Noyce induction model on teacher retention to learn whether we are able to overcome the contributing factors identified by Ingersoll.
This work focuses on a two-year induction model that consists of the novice teachers attending monthly dinner meetings before COVID and Zoom meetings during COVID that provide a forum for sharing instructional and school-related issues. Our attendance prior to COVID was fairly consistent and had significant numbers of participants. Even through 2019-2020, when our schools were predominantly virtual. This school year, our attendance has been sparse due to demands on the teachers. This poster will examine the overall question: What has been the impact of the induction model across the various Noyce awards? To answer this question, we will consider: How has attendance varied over the time of the Noyce awards? What events might explain variations? What does the feedback on the induction sessions tell us is working and what needs are not being met?
To answer these questions, we are using a mixed methods approach. The data collected to date includes attendance at induction sessions, retention in the classroom, retention in high-needs classrooms, and interviews conducted at the last induction session each year. The attendance and retention data will be examined using simple statistical measures to look for patterns.
The two-year VCU induction model has been very successful with at least 83% of the completing scholars attending at least one session. Cohort attendance has varied from 10% for to 100% for novice teachers. There are a variety of reasons for not attending including family obligations in the evening, coaching duties, and living too far from VCU to attend. Session attendance ranges from 2 to 9+. The novice teachers believe the sessions are helpful and that they learn from their colleagues through the protocols. Areas that the novice teachers struggle with include classroom management, student work ethic post COVID, student honesty on assignments, working with diverse students who are different from them, and lack of school leadership support. Modifications have been made over the years to meet the teacher’s needs. What new needs may need to be addressed as we move past COVID?
As we move past COVID, we hope to support our scholars and new scholar teachers in the continuing stressful education landscape and to provide support for learning opportunities they did not have through additional professional development and networking opportunities. We are once again able to support interns working in summer camps and hope this continues to help as a recruitment tool. The VCU Noyce grant has impacted over 100 preservice students as Noyce Scholars to date (11 Cohorts). Of these Noyce Scholars, 85% have completed their obligation to the grant. Of these Scholars, 70% continue to teach science or mathematics. Two of ten completing their obligation in phase I year 1 are completing their 10th year of teaching. The VCU model provides relevant coursework leading to licensure and an induction model that supports these scholars. Not only has the VCU Noyce project impacted the scholars, but it has impacted their students.