Mentor Program Outline
All teachers who are new to the Owatonna Public Schools are provided with a one-to-one mentor for the first year of employment in the district. Mentors are selected according to proximity to the mentee, grade level/content area taught, and by administrator input. Professional development experiences are provided according to the experience level of the mentees. For those who are new to the profession or come to the district with less than three years of experience, monthly mini-sessions are offered to provide mentees with an opportunity to dialogue and practice with fellow initiates in areas including development of classroom rules and procedures, preparing for parent-teacher conferences, implementation of Minnesota’s Academic Standards in their courses, meeting the needs of diverse learners, and professional portfolio development. For teachers with greater than three years of experience, extended training opportunities are provided in district-wide initiatives such as Danielson's Frameworks for Effective Teaching and the Continuous Improvement (Baldrige) Process.
Two groups of teachers are eligible for Year Two of the Owatonna Induction Program: New teachers in their second probationary year of service in Owatonna (These teachers do not receive an individual Mentor, but work with Mentor Program Coordinators during this period), and experienced teachers new to the Owatonna Schools who are in their one year of probationary service in District 761 (These teachers receive a Mentor during this year).
Initiatives undertaken in the Year Two Induction Program address District initiatives determined to be priorities for all faculty: Owatonna's Continuous Improvement (Baldrige) Program and Danielson's Frameworks for Teaching.
As probationary teachers transition into veteran faculty in the Owatonna Public Schools, their professional growth and development continue to be highly valued by District 761. Monthly opportunities for professional development are provided through activities chosen and designed via input from all Owatonna teachers through yearly surveys. In these offerings, the Owatonna Public Schools Induction Program is committed to providing professional development opportunities that are meaningful for teachers at all career levels. Such sessions may include (but are not limited to) the following: