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Impact of New Educator Support System Activities on Beginning Teachers’ Teaching
Practices. Bradley, Danielle, 2008: Applied Dissertation, Nova Southeastern University,
Fischler School of Education and Human Services. Mentors/Beginning Teachers/Teacher
Attrition/Teacher Skills/High School Teachers
This applied dissertation was designed to investigate the impact of New Educator Support
System (NESS) activities on beginning teachers’ knowledge of effective teaching
practices and their perceptions of the quality of the NESS activities. Beginning teachers
at a south Florida high school were working in classrooms with weak classroom
management skills, lesson-plan development, and instructional skills, which concerned
school administrators and coaching mentors in that they negatively impacted student
achievement and behaviors.
Three quantitative research questions evolved from the study’s problem statement:
1. What is the impact of the NESS activities on the beginning teachers’ classroom
management skills as measured by the New Educator Effective Teacher Practice
2. What is the impact of the NESS activities on the beginning teachers’ lesson-plan
development as measured by the New Educator Effective Teacher Practice Instrument?
3. What is the impact of the NESS activities on the beginning teachers’ instructional
skills as measured by the New Educator Effective Teacher Practice Instrument?
Two qualitative research questions evolved from the study’s problem statement:
1. What are the beginning teachers’ perceptions regarding the strengths and weaknesses
of the NESS activities utilized by beginning teachers?
2. What recommendations can be made to school administrators based on the analyzed
data and literature review?
Data were collected through the use of a survey instrument and interviews. Based on a 4-
point scale, the mean for classroom management was 2.65, lesson-plan development was
2.35, and instructional skills was 2.78. Participants’ perceived strengths of the NESS
activities included (a) assigned mentor, (b) resources for lesson planning, (c) sharing of
best practices, (d) observations of beginning teachers, and (e) observations of mentors.
Perceived weaknesses included (a) lack of organization and structure, (b) presentation
style of group meetings, (c) meeting teachers’ needs, and (d) lack of time with mentor.
Recommendations for improving NESS activities included mandatory observations of
veteran teachers, a comprehensive needs assessment, separate group meetings for only
new teachers, a manual providing new teachers with valuable resources to survive the 1st
year of teaching successfully, and an orientation 2 weeks prior to the start of the school