How Arkansas Teacher Corps Used Edthena to Boost Teaching Fellow Retention

The Arkansas Teacher Corps was recently awarded the annual Outstanding Team Award for 2021. The recognition came from the University of Arkansas Staff Senate.

The Arkansas Teacher Corps (ATC) partners the University of Arkansas with the Arkansas Department of Education and Arkansas public school districts to recruit, train, license, and support Arkansan teachers.

So how did ATC earn an Outstanding Team Award? Through their use of Edthena!

As with many teacher preparation programs, in-person coaching is not always viable or efficient. Edthena Video Coaching serves as an asynchronous way for ATC instructors to observe and provide feedback to teaching fellows.

With Edthena Video Coaching, teaching fellows easily record and upload teaching videos and share them with coaches to receive time-stamped comments and feedback.

In an ATC post about how the Arkansas Teacher Corps implemented Edthena, team members wrote,

“By creating a comprehensive system for virtual coaching in 2021, our team has increased the overall participation of teachers in the coaching process and increased teacher satisfaction with coaching specifically.

This has also led to decreased teacher burnout, increased teacher retention, and increased teacher growth compared to the year before.”

Keep reading for a look into how the Arkansas Teacher Corps used Edthena as its virtual coaching platform to achieve stronger teacher satisfaction, retention, and growth.

Turning to virtual coaching to support teaching fellows

Arkansas Teacher Corps faced a few obstacles in 2020. With a need for the teacher preparation program to turn to virtual learning and coaching, teacher-coaches were not able to visit teaching fellows to observe their teaching and give feedback to address instructional gaps.

Some alternatives, such as fellows manually recording themselves and emailing teaching videos to their coach, were difficult and timely to sustain.

“The lack of consistent infrastructure meant much more frustration with the process and more time lost,” noted the ATC team.

Arkansas Teacher Corps found the solution with Edthena Video Coaching. As the team piloted the platform in Spring 2021 and then moved to full implementation in Fall 2021, teaching fellows were able to consistently share lesson-length videos and clips of specific teaching practices with their coaches.

The ATC team shared, “With the added ease of the Edthena infrastructure, our fellows increased the average number of uploaded videos by 156% and our coaches provided 650% more feedback on average per fellow.”

In addition, fellows’ overall satisfaction with the coaching they received increased. In fact, after implementing Edthena Video Coaching, 100% of fellows reported satisfaction with the quality and frequency of coaching they received.

Satisfaction with coaching leads to greater teaching fellow retention and growth

Greater teaching fellow satisfaction also meant greater teaching fellow retention.

In 2021, Arkansas Teacher Corps saw a 10%-point increase in the average of first-year teachers who finished their first year and returned for a second year.

chart showing Arksansas Teacher Corps teaching fellow retention, 202 compared to 2021
This chart shows the percentage of first-year ATC fellows who finished the year and returned for a second year in 2021 after adopting Edthena, compared to 2020. credit: Arkansas Teacher Corps

Not only did the number of teaching fellows increase, but their individual performance grew as well.

The ATC team remarked, “As fellows received unparalleled virtual coaching, we also saw fellows performing at a higher level with students.”

On the Arkansas Teacher Excellence & Support System (TESS) rubric, an increase of 13%-points more fellows met the growth benchmark compared to the previous year.

The Arkansas Teacher Corps team learns together and wins awards together

Through their dedicated implementation of Edthena Video Coaching, the Arkansas Teacher Corps team showed how an asynchronous coaching platform can improve the program experience for teacher preparation candidates.

With proven growth in teaching fellow satisfaction, retention, and growth, receiving the “2021 Outstanding Team Award” was just the cherry on top of a successful virtual video coaching model.

Want to learn more about Edthena Video Coaching? Check out this video coaching information page

Interested in what else is going on at Arkansas Teacher Corps? Check out this blog post about how ATC is supporting rural teachers.

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