ExperiencED Success: Does Mentoring Beginning Teachers Impact the Mentor?
While available research supports the impact mentoring has on beginning teachers, little has been written about the impact the role of mentoring has on the experienced teacher serving as a mentor. Mentor teachers are experienced teachers in schools who provide a wealth of knowledge and support to students as well as other teachers, including beginning teachers. As college students continue to choose other careers, and teachers continue to turnover and choose other professions, the amount of teachers, including experienced teachers, has been gravely dwindling across our nation. The state of North Carolina is struggling to compete with other states, specifically with regard to teacher compensation (National Education Association, 2019; Public Schools First NC, 2018). This is the time to consider ways to keep experienced teachers engaged in their profession. Research shows the act of being mentored greatly increased the success and longevity of a beginning teacher (Achinstein & Athanases, 2006; Darling-Hammond et al., 1990; Huling-Austin, 1989, 1990; National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future, 1996; Odell & Ferraro, 1992; Pearson & Honig, 1992; Smith & Ingersoll, 2004; Strong & St. John, 2001; Wilson et al., 2001), but can it also contribute to the success and longevity of the mentor? The purpose of this dissertation was to examine the act of mentoring and determine if there was a relationship between mentoring and teacher performance, teacher effectiveness, and teacher retention of the person serving as the mentor. ExperiencED Success is named for the success of experienced educators. The theoretical frameworks of Situated Cognition, Communities of Practice, Expectancy Value Theory of Achievement, and Drive Motivation Theory serve as the foundation for ExperiencED Success. These frameworks are blended to examine the connection between prior research to the current study, identifying if there is a difference in teacher performance, teacher effectiveness, and teacher retention results for mentor teachers in the state of North Carolina when compared to experienced teachers who did not serve as mentors. The sample population included mentors and non-mentors within a large urban school district in the state of North Carolina. Quantitative analysis was used to investigate and compare the difference in teacher performance between mentors and non-mentors, the difference in teacher effectiveness between mentors and non-mentors, and the difference in retention of mentors and non-mentors. Findings suggest mentor teachers had greater performance, greater effectiveness, and greater retention when compared to non-mentor teachers. These results can be used to inform policy, practice, and further research.