The Volusia County School Board, in collaboration with the Volusia United Teachers (VUE), adopted a Peer Assistance and Review (PAR) program as an integral part of the new teacher evaluation program called Volusia System for Empowering Teachers (VSET). The goal of PAR is to assist teachers who are new to teaching. A PAR serves in the capacity of Mentor. A PAR Mentor will assist, support, coach, and guide the professional growth of teachers participating in the VCS New Teacher Induction Program (TIP), the Danielson Framework for Teaching and their Deliberate Practice Plan.
A participating teacher is a teacher enrolled in the Peer Assistance Review program.
A novice teacher is a teacher in the first year of teaching.
A PAR Teacher is a district teacher on assignment who assists, supports, coaches and guides the professional growth of a novice teacher or an experienced teacher in need of additional support.
VSET, Volusia System for Empowering Teachers, is the professional growth and evaluation system for teacher in Volusia County Schools.
The Framework for Teaching, developed by Charlotte Danielson, includes rubrics that describe the effective teaching practices for the twenty-two components at the heart of the Volusia System for Empowering Teachers (VSET).
PAR Teachers are responsible for a caseload of 15 - 25 teachers. The PAR teachers are 10-month district teachers on assignment who receive specialized training and ongoing professional development throughout the year.
While serving in their mentoring role, a PAR Teacher informally observes participating teachers at work and provides the support that will help the participating teacher succeed in meeting the district’s standards as described in the Danielson Framework for Teaching. The PAR Teacher keeps detailed records about each teacher’s performance in the MyPGS Mentoring Log.
Participating Teachers – new to teaching
For novice teachers in Volusia County Schools, PAR serves as an important portion of the teacher induction program. In addition to providing advice on instruction and classroom management, the PAR Teacher helps the new teacher set up his or her classroom, secure necessary instructional resources, and navigate the first year of teaching in Volusia County Schools. The PAR Teacher will assist each new teacher in the development of a monitored Deliberate Practice Plan and provide support throughout the year in meeting the goals of that growth plan.
Principals, assistant principals and district administrators will continue to evaluate teachers in the PAR program according to the process in VSET. Administrator evaluators do have an important role in the PAR process. If a principal has a concern or if the principal would like to discuss the progress of a teacher in the PAR program, he or she may request a meeting to talk to the PAR Teacher. However, it is important to note that the content of any conversation between an administrator and a PAR teacher will be shared with the participating teacher. This disclosure is essential to maintain trust between the PAR Teacher and the participating teacher.
Responsibilities of PAR Teachers
- Assist assigned teachers with classroom procedures and environment.
- Assist with data analysis for assigned teachers’ incoming students.
- Assist assigned teachers to develop Deliberate Practice Plans.
- Monitor and assist to refine assigned teachers’ instructional planning and delivery.
- Provide timely feedback to assigned teachers to improve practice.
- Maintain confidentiality while working with assigned teachers. (Share progress with the building administrator with teacher permission.)
- Seek additional assistance if assigned teacher is not making sufficient progress.
Note: It is the PAR teacher’s professional obligation to report misconduct to the principal/site
Supervisor in a timely manner.
A PAR Teacher visits the classroom of each teacher on his/her caseload at least once every week. As the year progresses, the PAR Teacher may adjust the visitations based on the need of each participating teacher. The PAR Teacher may confer with the participating teacher in person, by phone, or on a limited basis via e-mail. At times, the PAR teacher may bring together all the participating teachers on his/her caseload for a sharing and learning opportunity.
PAR Teacher Contacts
Bryan Cummings, PAR Teacher
Donna Fine, PAR Teacher
Wendi Gifford, PAR Teacher
Rachele Hyde Underhill, PAR Teacher
Mistie Klein, PAR Teacher
Sara Maitland, PAR Teacher
LeAnn Strickland, PAR Teacher