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Tool: Addressing the challenges beginning teachers face

Question: How can principals can directly and indirectly help beginning teachers address the challenges that they face?

Purpose of this tool: Beginning teachers typically face several challenges as they assume responsibility for instruction and student learning. Some of these challenges pertain to their own development; some have to do with school conditions; and some result from district policies and other external factors. This tool is designed to increase your awareness of the challenges faced by new teachers and to help you develop strategies for addressing them.

How to use this tool: Principals can use this tool to reflect on the challenges faced by beginning teachers in their schools and to take steps to alleviate them. The tool can be used by school leaders themselves, one-on-one with new teachers or in collaboration with beginning and experienced teachers. The tool lists eight significant challenges that many new teachers experience. For each challenge, the tool includes strategies to help new teachers address or alleviate the situation.

Challenges Your helpful responses?
1. Difficult work assignments  
2. Inadequate resources  
3. Unclear expectations  
4. Limited views about teaching  
5. Lack of dialogue about instruction  
6. Lack of involvement in school-wide curriculum and instructional decisions  
7. Sink of swim mentality  
8. Reality shock and disillusionment