Summer 2021

ESRP 9000 Professor

Melissa T. Sasso, Ed.D.

ESRP 9001 Professor

Dana Mills, Ph.D.

Executive Summary

This strategic research project was designed to provide potential solutions to address some organizational issues by conducting a Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats analysis of the Gadsden County School District. Through the analysis, teacher recruitment and retention was found to be a significant issue for the Gadsden County School District along with other rural school districts. Teachers are leaving the profession every day, while the stress of the profession continues to increase. School leadership is having a hard time finding people that are certified and interested in teaching. To this end, it is important to focus on a solution that would aide with improving student outcomes through high-quality instruction.

There are four potential solutions that can contribute to improving teacher recruitment and retention in rural school districts: implementation of teacher induction programs, implementation of teacher incentive programs, developing a marketing plan for the school district, and developing partnerships with local colleges/universities. Either of these potential solutions could aide in addressing the issue of teacher recruitment and retention. Teacher induction programs provide the necessary supports for novice teachers and even veteran teachers to ensure their success in the classroom. Teacher incentive programs can be designed to support recruiting teachers or used to incentivize teachers for their hard work in the classroom. Marketing plans help with targeting potential hires and branding the school district in a positive light. Partnering with local colleges and universities would afford the school district additional resources to support teachers’ professional growth and students’ outcomes.

The one selected solution of developing teacher induction programs would be a manageable solution for the school district’s leadership team. A teacher induction program is already in place. However, there are some structures that can be improved upon to ensure teachers are receiving appropriate support in the profession. In addition, it would be vital to link the support given to teachers directly to students’ achievement.

Implementing teacher induction programs and emphasizing on professional learning opportunities were two strategies that were derived in the planning process. It was found, through evaluation, that implementing teacher induction programs would be the most attractive strategy to assist with combating the problem. A four-phase action plan was developed that emphasized planning, structure, mentor/mentee matching, and monitoring for program effectiveness. If implemented appropriately, school district leadership teams would find that teacher induction could aide the school district in more ways than one. It is recommended that leadership teams focus on the intended outcomes and collaborate with other school districts. Teacher induction programs would support student outcomes, beginning teacher effectiveness, and empower veteran teachers.

Document Type

Strategic Research Project-NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Abraham S. Fischler College of Education