Problems and induction needs of beginning agriculture teachers in community junior secondary schools in Botswana: A national study

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Date
1999
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Mokgatle, Olivia Senkeree
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Acker, David G.
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The primary purpose of this study was to identify organizational and instructional problems of beginning agriculture teachers in community junior secondary schools in Botswana in 1998. The study also identified induction assistance needs as perceived by beginning teachers. The population of the study was all beginning agriculture teachers (107), who had completed their first and second years of teaching. The beginning teachers who responded to the survey (82%) responded to 34 questions regarding their teaching situations, and 18 questions regarding their induction needs. The teachers reported problems in instructional, practical and administrative activities. Areas constituting the highest level of difficulty for the beginning teacher were motivating students, dealing with slow learners, classroom management, student discipline, evaluating the learning process and managing practical activities. Among the forms of induction support perceived by beginning teachers as important were availability of a mentor teacher, opportunity to observe other teachers teaching, feedback from the school head/senior teacher, and provision of induction support throughout the first year of teaching. The findings of this study also revealed that the forms of induction assistance that were offered most frequently were those that the beginning teachers did not perceive as important. The forms of assistance that were perceived to be of major or critical importance did not occur at all or occurred infrequently. The most fundamental forms of support needs are not being met, such as provision of a mentor teacher, evaluation feedback, lesson observations, reduced workload, beginning teachers handbook, in-service training on stress management, and time management and most importantly, provision of continued support throughout the first year of teaching.
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