Missouri Teacher Certification requires that beginning teacher support systems include a two-year mentor program with support for teachers during years 3-5. The Rockwood School District has established a two year mentor/mentee program and induction process that aligns with the Missouri Professional Development/Mentoring Guidelines. In Rockwood, beginning teachers as well as teachers new to the district with experience are assigned a mentor by their building principal. The mentor serves in an official capacity for all teachers new to Rockwood during their first two years in the district (and up to three years as needed for beginning teachers). The mentor will continue to act as a resource/support as needed in years three through five of the probationary period for brand new teachers A mentor's role and responsibility includes the following:
- Assist with establishment and implementation of a Teacher Growth Plan.
- Support mentee with professional learning related to a Culture for Teaching and Learning, Quality Assessment FOR/OF Learning, and/or Reflective Practice to Improve Teaching and Learning
- Demonstrate research-based effective teaching strategies.
- Provide direct and informal assistance.
- Serve as a professional role model for the beginning teacher.
- Attend mentor training.
The building principal is responsible for identifying teachers to serve as mentors. Mentors are required to have five years' successful teaching experience, be exemplary teachers in their content area/grade level, and willing to grow as a reflective practitioner. Mentors assist the new teacher in establishing and implementing a Teacher Growth Plan. Release time is provided for mentors to work with their mentees as needed. Mentors are required to submit appropriate documentation to the Professional Learning Office once each semester.