PAS Corner- Staff Orientation

Michelle Long 

Getting new teachers acclimated to your program takes time. Time that often gets interrupted by the need to have the new teacher cover ratios. The problem is once you place a teacher in a classroom, it becomes more and more difficult to pull them back out and ensure they know everything they need to do their job well. 

Finding and taking the time to orient new teachers is the key to their success within your program. It ensures that you have provided them with all the essential information to meet the expectations of the position for which they were hired. 

“The only thing worse than training employees and losing them, is to not train them and keep them.” – Zig Ziglar 

Providing new employees with a job description, employee handbook, parent handbook and personnel policies helps to ensure that they learn and understand not only their expectations, but those of other staff and parents as well. Plan for an annual review of the materials to ensure all orientation materials are up-to-date and accurate. You never want to start a new teacher off with inaccurate information. 

By starting each new hire off with an introductory or probationary period, gives them a chance to absorb and practice the new information, as well as to ensure there is a good fit between the teacher, children, parents, and program. It allows the new teacher a chance to feel comfortable and gain confidence in his/her new position and achieve his/her full potential.  

On-going feedback from the supervisor is a key element of the orientation process. New teachers need to know what they are doing well and what they could enhance or learn more about. Use the opportunity to build trust.  

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle 

Making sure that all new teachers receive an orientation will require you to have a written orientation procedure that includes timeframes for the process, activities to be completed during orientation, training to be completed, forms and handbooks to be shared, as well as information specific to the classroom where they will be working. All these need to be part of the system (refer to the previous PAS Corner “Systems” for additional information) you have in place to ensure the orientation is consistently implemented.  

“Consistency is the belt that fastens excellence in position. If you don’t do it repeatedly, you’ll not excel in it.” – Israelmore Ayivor 

“Success doesn’t come from what you do occasionally, it comes from what you do consistently.” – Marie Forleo 

A consistently implemented orientation procedure contributes to a more productive and more effective environment. 


For additional reading on this topic: 

“Why is Orientation Important to Employees?” Zach Lazzari – Small Business Chronicles; May 24, 2019 

“Don’t Underestimate the Importance of Good Onboarding” Arlene S. Hirsch; August 10, 2017 



The author pqaadmin

Leave a Response