A mixed methods study identifying reoccurring themes in policies and processes in grow your own teacher recruitment and retention programs
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Research revealed teachers are the most influential factor on student achievement and districts face their own unique set of challenges as they attempt to maintain a highly qualified teaching staff. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to examine the extent to which Grow Your Own Teacher (GYOT) programs assist districts in meeting the demand for highly qualified teachers and add to the existing pool of knowledge regarding teacher recruitment and retention practices. The study incorporated two methodological strategies with five populations. The primary method involved policy analysis and the second involved Chi-Square analysis. Analysis of program policies and survey questions disclosed nine overriding themes and program personnel recognizing mentoring as the key component to program effectiveness. Chi-Square analyses lead to the failure to reject the null hypothesis for program three and rejection of the null hypothesis for program five. This research leads to several implications. First, a need for longitudinal studies to examine the impact of GYOT programs over time. In addition, there is the need to investigate the differences between student achievement of those teachers who participate in GYOT programs and those who do not. Finally, more research is needed to explore GYOT best practices and to identify effective teacher candidate follow-up procedures.