Mentor Qualities and Characteristics
After reading the text chapters, respond to the following scenario:
Silence falls over the group of 10 teachers at the monthly staff meeting as they see the early-childhood education coach enter the room.
Coach: Hi, everyone. As you know, your director invited me here today to discuss some issues identified during your program’s annual performance review. I know these are not the conditions under which you might want to meet with me. While in the past you have had your choice of professional development areas to focus on, tonight you are required to examine the topics of medication management and child health records. I would like to propose you use the same process or steps as when you chose the topics in the past.
First, we will brainstorm together to problem-solve and decide which of the choices presented is the best way to comply with specific health guidelines. The result is mandated, but the way we get there needs to fit this program. Also remember, all programs have opportunities for growth, and your willingness to examine your practices really says a lot about all of you as professionals who care deeply about the children in your safekeeping.
The goal for this first meeting and for the next three follow-up coaching sessions is to create and then implement a written plan with the following sections:
A description of the practices we need to address.
A proposed timeline to meet all health and safety requirements.
An identification of responsibility for specific staff to take leadership on revising previous practices and/or establishing new ones.
A plan documenting the changes that will ensure program compliance with health and safety standards.
But before we get started, does anyone have any comments or suggestions?
Mary: Yes. I think they are way too picky about these things, but I am willing to learn.
Sue: I agree, but since I want the parents to know that we are doing everything we should, I think this will be helpful. You can never be too safe when young children are involved.
Lonnie: I have questions about our playground. Will we have time to talk about other safety areas?
Coach: How about if I pass out these blank cards, and you jot down your questions and/or comments to ensure that we can address each by the end of our session? I promise that we will examine the areas you want to discuss by the end of our coaching sessions. Does that sound like a good way to start?