The University of North Carolina System has announced that the North Carolina New Teacher Support Program (NC NTSP) will relocate from the UNC System office to the campus of East Carolina University beginning this July.
The NC NTSP is a comprehensive, university-based induction program offering a research-based curriculum and multiple services designed to promote teacher retention and improve the effectiveness of beginning teachers. The program provides intensive induction support aligned to each teacher’s individual needs, teaching assignment, and school environment.
This move is part of a larger strategy promoted by UNC System President Margaret Spellings and the UNC Board of Governors to analyze how current system-office roles and responsibilities align with its core mission, strategic goals and competencies.
“We need to constantly challenge our assumptions about how we do our work to ensure we are having the greatest possible positive impact,” said President Spellings. “The North Carolina New Teacher Support Program has demonstrated success in improving new teacher performance and retention. We want to build on that success by ensuring the program is housed in an academic setting surrounded by educators who can help the program grow and thrive.”
The UNC System office sought proposals from interested UNC institutions to house the program and then convened an external review committee which included three people familiar with the NC NTSP and educational issues in North Carolina to make a recommendation to President Spellings about the program’s placement. The committee included the following members:
- Dr. Andrea Whittaker, Director of Teacher Performance Assessment at the Stanford Center for Assessment, Learning and Equity (SCALE) at the Stanford Graduate School of Education
- Andrew Sioberg, Director of Educator Preparation at the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction
- Dr. Bryan Hassel, Co-President, Public Impact
While the unanimous choice of the committee was ECU, Appalachian State University and UNC-Greensboro also submitted strong proposals.
“Housing the NC New Teacher Support Program at ECU confirms our institution’s commitment to improving the quality of education for citizens of North Carolina, specifically in historically disadvantaged communities, in collaboration with UNC institutions across the state,” said ECU Chancellor Cecil Staton. “We hope that our work in improving the education for P-12 students in North Carolina will create better opportunities for our youth to gain access to our great university system.”
Dean of ECU’s College of Education, Grant Hayes, echoed Chancellor Staton’s sentiment.
“We are very excited to have the opportunity to house the NTSP program at ECU,” said Dean Hayes. “We are committed to ensuring educator preparation reform and we are currently conducting research on the impact NC NTSP has on teacher preparation, teacher induction, and teacher leadership. We plan to work collaboratively with participating institutions to continue to advance the important work of this impactful program.”
Vance County is one of 53 North Carolina school districts partnering with NC NTSP.
“The New Teacher Support Program has been a game-changer for us in Vance County,” said Dr. Anthony Jackson, Superintendent of Vance County Public Schools. “As the teacher supply pipeline continues to constrict, we have decided as a district to focus on strategies to expand our support of our new and lateral entry teachers. NC NTSP has been a key component of this very deliberate theory of action. As a result, our retention rate of new teachers has stabilized and our turnover rate during the school year has declined. We are pleased with the support, the work, and the partnership.”
Recurring funding from the General Assembly, as well as generous contributions from The Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, allow NC NTSP to provide participating school districts subsidized support for early career teachers. Nine UNC System institutions couple new teacher support with existing services in partner districts resulting in relationships that benefits both school districts and the universities. This move will not affect the partnership agreements with institutions or school districts nor will it impact the relationships with the NC General Assembly or Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation.
The goal of the North Carolina New Teacher Support Program is to improve student achievement by increasing teacher effectiveness and reducing teacher attrition.