P. O. BOX 2120
May 10, 1996


TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: William C. Bosher, Jr.
Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT: Virginia Mentor Teacher Program

  The Virginia General Assembly, in it's 1996 session,
  approved an appropriation in the amount of $300,000 to
  support a statewide mentor teacher program during the 1996-1998
  biennium.  One half of the funds, $150,000 are
  available for each year of the biennium.  Funds from this
  appropriation will be made available to match local funds in
  school divisions wishing to implement mentor teacher
  programs to support newly hired first year teachers.  Grant
  awards will be made during the summer for program
  implementation in the 1996-1997 school year.
  Local participation in this program is voluntary.  Divisions
  wishing to participate in the program should complete the
  two-step application process described below.
     Step one:  Letter of intent
     All applicants must submit a one page letter indicating
     their intent to participate in the Virginia Mentor
     Teacher Program no later than June 5, 1996.  This
     letter should include a brief abstract of the
     activities that will be undertaken through the mentor
     program and a preliminary budget that reflects a
     dollar-for-dollar match between Mentor Teacher Program
     funds and funds from local sources.
     Step two:  Application Packet
     All applicants must submit an application packet no
     later than June 30, 1996.  The total application must
     not exceed 5 double spaced pages, excluding the cover
     sheet and the budget.  Each application must include
     eight sections listed below.
     1.   Cover sheet (use attached form)
     2.   Criteria for selection of mentor teachers
     3.   Training and support for mentor teachers
     4.   Compensation for mentor teachers
     5.   Collaboration between the school division
          institutions of higher education
     6.   Assignment of mentor teachers to beginning
     7.   Evaluation
     8.   Budget (use attached form)
  Letters of intent and local applications should be mailed
                      Thomas A. Elliott
                Division Chief for Compliance
               Virginia Department of Education
                        P.O. Box 2120
                   Richmond, VA 23216-2120
  School divisions that participate in this program will
  be required to provide a brief annual summary that includes
  the following information:
     1.   The number of mentor teachers who received
          training during the year;
     2.   The number of teachers who received compensation
          for service as a mentor during the year;
     3.   The number of beginning teachers who received
          support from a mentor teacher during the year;
     4.   A description of the training activities that were
     5.   A description of the collaboration with colleges
          and universities;
     6.   A summary of any evaluation data that is
          available; and,
     7.   Funds expended 
  In the second year of the program and any following years
  for which funds are available, school divisions will be
  required to provide information regarding the continuing
  employment of beginning teachers who received mentoring
  support through the program.
  The attached guidelines for development of letters of intent
  and local applications provide more detailed guidance
  regarding the application procedure.  If you need additional
  information, please contact Thomas A. Elliott at (804)
  371-2522 or Jo Smith Read, Specialist for Personnel
  Development at (804) 225-2096.
  Attachments: This memo and its attachment will be sent to
               the superintendent's office.