Half of California's newly trained teachers leave the classroom within five years, according to state figures. To begin to address this problem in the San Gabriel Valley and elsewhere, the state-funded California New Teacher Project has just released a 13-minute videotape, "Passage Into Teaching."
In the tape, teachers describe what it's like to be a beginning teacher and explain how they were helped past their difficulties. The tape, which districts can obtain from the Los Angeles County Office of Education, is one product of a statewide research effort.
In addition to the tape, there are 37 new-teacher support programs being tested across the state at an annual cost of about $3.3 million.
There are two basic forms of these programs, said state project consultant Sue Garmston.
In one, a new teacher is paired with a more experienced one. In the other, new teachers attend regular workshops. There are other workshops for administrators, veteran teachers and district officials to help them understand the problems new teachers encounter.