chapter
Mentoring together
ByPaul Clarke
Pages 14

This chapter focuses on people who are working in a subject department where trainees are assigned and where they may teach under the guidance of several different teachers. It explores the creative force behind a mentoring department, and how trainees may be helped by teacher mentors with very different ways of working. The chapter looks at the benefits of spreading the mentoring load between experienced and less experienced teachers, and how the process of mentoring can have an impact on the development of the department. A pitfall of mentoring as a department can be in the management of a weak trainee. Trusting relationships need to exist between members of a department themselves before they can be modelled for a trainee teacher. A brilliant mentoring department sits comfortably within the ­culture of collaboration, mentoring and training expected of contemporary schools. For day-to-day paperwork, the best departments and mentors seem to succeed in creating a culture of 'mediated self-reliance'.