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Posted on January 2nd, 2013
Teachers are the heartbeat of high quality and effective Jewish Day Schools. They deserve proper training and support to refine and improve their skills, and, equally as important, must have a desire to remain at their schools. For over a decade, the Jewish New Teacher Project (JNTP) has addressed both of these areas, helping Day Schools offer support to new and veteran teachers in Jewish and general studies through their intensive mentoring and mentor training programs.
JNTP’s model was adapted from the New Teacher Center in Santa Cruz, California, which trains veteran teachers to provide two years of intensive mentoring to support new teachers in public schools across the country. Along with supporting new teachers, JNTP helps Day Schools recognize, retain, and deepen the teaching and leadership skills of their best teachers and provides Day Schools with a vision for rigorous professional development and a set of professional teaching standards.
"The mentoring program has had a profound impact on improving quality of instruction and teacher support at [my school]."
- Principal at Jewish Day School
What began with a select group of Jewish Day Schools in Metropolitan New York ten years ago, JNTP expanded into Washington, DC and Baltimore with a Jim Joseph Foundation grant, and now works with mentors and new teachers throughout the east coast. In 2012, JNTP worked with 75 mentors and 106 new teachers at 45 schools in Connecticut, Florida, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. Their training seminars for new teachers, mentors, and principals helped each group understand how they can contribute to new teacher induction and provided them with critical tools to help new teachers grow and succeed.
Later this year, JNTP will release a study detailing its successes in helping Day Schools retain their teachers. According to data collected through previous studies, nearly 90 percent of teachers that participate in JNTP’s new teacher induction program stay with their schools for five or more years – the national rate is only around 50 percent.
Leading this program is Nina Bruder, who joined JNTP as its new executive director in fall 2012. She will guide the organization as it continues to engage more teachers and mentors throughout the country. This training is so critical to help Day Schools offer the best education possible to North American Jewish youth.
Jim Joseph Foundation grant for expansion into Baltimore and Washington, DC
Up to $1,719,622 over 6 years, 2008 - 2014