Student Teaching College Supervisors
The College Supervisor is Expected To:
- Establish a supportive environment for the candidate.
- Establish a mentoring relationship with the candidate.
- Meet with the candidate and School Based Educator at the beginning of the student teaching placement to design a meaningful and comprehensive experience. The experience should be designed to support achievement of the learning outcomes as outlined on the student teaching evaluation form.
- Review the long-range plan for the student teaching experience with the SBE and the candidate.
- Observe the candidate at least three times per placement, giving information and suggestions to help him or her become an effective teacher. These visits are arranged in advance with the SBE and the candidate.
- Check with the SBE on each visit to determine the candidate’s progress and areas for future growth.
- Complete the mid placement and final evaluation form on the candidate in consultation with the SBE. This form must be completed collaboratively and promptly to ensure that the candidate receives a fair and comprehensive evaluation and grade assignment for the placement.
- If the candidate is not making satisfactory progress, meet with the candidate and the SBE to develop a professional improvement plan.
- At the end of the placement, meet with the candidate and SBE to review and discuss the final evaluation results. The evaluation process is a collaboration between the college supervisor and the SBE. The college supervisor submits the final grade for the candidate.
- Plan and implement at least seven seminars for all of their assigned candidates, according to the school calendar.
- Establish and maintain open lines of communication with the candidate, SBE, and others as necessary.
- Help the candidate to achieve maximum individual potential by suggesting strategies for implementation.
- Deliver the completed evaluation form to the Director one week after the placement has ended.
It is important that candidates get used to receiving and implementing feedback. Every professional’s performance is evaluated in some way. It is imperative that a candidate be provided the opportunity to receive this type of feedback from the start. More importantly, feedback lays the groundwork for the improvement of teaching skills. A college supervisor who can provide specific feedback helps a candidate reach his/her full potential.
Recognize the need to give constructive feedback to the candidate. Many individuals view feedback only in negative terms, as criticism rather than a means for improvement. Candidates are no exception. If a positive relationship has been established between the college supervisor and the candidate, then performance feedback will more likely be viewed as constructive. College supervisors must provide feedback that is focused and constructive rather than critical of the candidate as a person.
Base feedback on observation. A college supervisor’s feedback should be based on direct observation of the student teacher. The observation and feedback needed varies greatly among candidates. College supervisors and candidates benefit from frequent observations at the beginning of the experience. As the candidate becomes more accustomed to the demands of the grade level, and the college supervisor feels more confident in the candidate’s ability, the number of observations can gradually be reduced.
Give honest appraisal of teaching performance. Many college supervisors are hesitant to give feedback or to say anything critical early in the assignment, fearing that the candidate will be discouraged. However, early feedback is important to correct habits or teaching behaviors that can lead to failure. This is equally true throughout the student teaching experience. The college supervisor must be honest with the candidate and not hesitate to give a true appraisal of the performance, even if it is negative. Candidates are novice teachers who need guidance from experienced teachers. The college supervisor should be diplomatic, balancing negative feedback with positive feedback. It is also important for the college supervisor to tell the candidate whatever he or she is doing well, to give praise when it is due, and to commend innovation and creativity.
Target areas for growth that are closely associated with areas of strength. As candidates work to refine their skills, college supervisors should identify one or two areas, based on the learning outcomes outlined in the student teaching evaluation, to fine-tune. Skills closely associated with the candidate’s areas of strength should be targeted first. As each new skill is acquired, the candidate should begin work on another.
Provide a variety of feedback. Feedback should not be limited to specific times or ways. It is important to be familiar with the evaluation form to address all areas. Formative feedback—brief comments throughout the day—is valuable. Share feedback privately with the candidate.
The college supervisor should formally observe a candidate at least three times during the experience. After the lesson, the college supervisor should verbally review the lesson with the candidate, expanding on written comments. The college supervisor should provide a copy of the evaluation to the candidate.
The Student Teaching Seminar is designed to establish an environment for student teacher support and professional development. It provides opportunities for ongoing observation and reflection about philosophy, theory, the reality of the classroom, and student learning.
Recommendations for Seminar Topics and Discussion:
- Expectations of candidates for student teaching and seminar
- Planning and implementation of units and lessons
- Classroom management
- Handling teacher to teacher politics
- Professional portfolio development
- Employment acquisition (interviewing, using a portfolio)
- Content-specific teaching strategies
- Reading and literacy strategies across the curriculum
- Effective integration of technology in the planning, delivery and assessment of instruction
- Urban educator perspective
- Reflective educator/action research
- New York State test preparation
- New York State and national standards
- Pedagogical content knowledge
- Instructional strategies
- Interpersonal relationships/community
- Stress management
- Theoretical frameworks
- Presentation/platform skills
- Sharing successes
- Application of state mandated trainings in classroom