'In need of additional support' procedures
A preservice teacher "in need of additional support" is a student who is identified as experiencing difficulty in their development towards achievement of one or more of the required standards or criteria as outlined in the appropriate professional-experience report and the illustrations of practice at graduate level published by the Australian Institute for Teaching and Leadership.
Within an internship, such an identification needs to be made where concerns exist as to the preservice teacher’s capacity to demonstrate they are able to meet the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership Professional Standards for Teachers: Graduate Teacher and thus a capacity to assume the level of teaching responsibility expected of an intern.
Identification of an intern as being "in need of additional support" will generally be made in the first instance by his or her mentor teacher. This would usually occur in consultation with the tertiary mentor. Identification may also arise from the work of the tertiary mentor. Early discussion with the Director of Professional Experience is expected.
This process should not occur at the point of a preservice teacher being failed and identification should preferably be made in the first two weeks of the internship placement. The purpose of early identification is to allow time to clearly define and communicate areas of concern to all parties, and establish a process of guidance and support appropriate to the preservice teacher’s development.
Once identification is made, the Professional Experience Office must be notified by either the mentor teacher or the tertiary mentor. The tertiary mentor and/or the mentor teacher is required to:
- complete a Need for Additional Support Notification (pdf, 84kB)
- inform the preservice teacher that he/she is in need of additional support and discuss the completed notification and its implications
- submit the completed notification to the Office of Professional Experience
- in discussion with the preservice teacher, the mentor teacher and tertiary mentor develop and document a set of expectations or action plan relevant to the areas of concern, with clear indications of processes to be followed for the remaining period of the placement (this is also submitted to the Office of Professional Experience)
- keep the Director of Professional Experience and/or the Office of Professional Experience informed of the progress of the process, including discussion of final grade to be awarded.
Within an internship, a program of additional support may require reversion to a more closely monitored form of Professional Experience, one in which less independent duty-of-care is expected of the preservice teacher. Under such circumstances, negotiation would occur between the mentor teacher and the Office of Professional Experience to adjust the level of recompense to the teacher as appropriate to the additional supervisory input required.
If appropriate, a second tertiary mentor, for example, a curriculum specialist and/or the Director of Professional Experience, may be called upon to attend the school. The mentor teacher and preservice Teacher should be informed if additional visits are to be made.