House Bill 3, passed in 2019, provided funding for school districts implementing a mentoring program for scheduled release time or a reduced teaching load for mentor teachers and their assigned classroom teachers, mentor stipends and mentoring training.
In participating districts, a mentor must be assigned to a teacher with less than two years of experience no later than the 30th day of the new teacher’s employment. To the extent practicable, mentors must be matched with new teachers in the same subject, grade level and school. No more than two teachers can be assigned to a mentor who serves as a teacher of record for, on average, six hours per instructional day; and no more than four teachers can be assigned to a mentor who serves as a teacher of record for, on average, less than six hours per instructional day.
The new teacher must be assigned a mentor for at least two years, and the mentor must meet with the new teacher a minimum of 12 hours each semester. Classroom observations may count toward the 12 hours of meeting time. Mentoring sessions must address orientation to the context; policies and practices of the school district; data-driven instructional practices; specific instructional coaching cycles, including coaching regarding conferences between parents and the classroom teacher; professional development; and professional expectations.
District mentoring programs must designate a specific time during the regular school day for meetings between mentor and beginning teachers, and cannot require meeting during the teachers’ preparation and planning periods.