The majority of teachers who leave this profession do so in their first five years. Additionally, the majority of teachers who stay longer profess a great degree of satisfaction with their careers— much to the benefit of the students and the community.
The experiences of the first few years of teaching are notoriously difficult, and one could even say traumatic in some cases. Many districts don’t have terrific on-boarding processes and mechanisms to support and encourage those new teachers who are, by far, experiencing the greatest stresses with the least ability to cope. These communities then have high turnover resulting in poor student outcomes.
The New Teachers Retreat provides a solution to some of these persistent problems.
If you’re a new teacher, attending the retreat allows you to surround yourself with your peers and some people who have traveled this path before you. Knowing you’re not alone and people just like you have succeeded before will lend you some strength to carry on. You will take a network of peers, mentors, and resources with you that will prove invaluable as you continue on in your career.
We are also offering Continuing Education Units (CEU’s) through Keene State College for professional development credit for both leaders and participants.
What Past Participants Have To Say
"Speaking to the other teachers in my content area [was the most meaningful part of the New Teachers Retreat.] They provided me with new ideas that I am excited to use in the fall! It is a great opportunity to reflect on your first, or early years of teaching, and hear from other professionals about new strategies to use in the classroom."
- Clairee Putnam, 2019 participant
"I highly recommend this Retreat to new teachers. All the instructors were supportive, caring and helpful. They provided awesome resources and covered information that I didn't even think of before. I have been to regular PD sessions and retreats over the part two years, and this by far, was the most enjoyable and helpful experience! I have tools in my toolkit, feel encouraged and ready to take on the next school year!"
- Whitney Lewis, 2019 participant
"Thank you for offering this Retreat! Being a new teacher can be scary and overwhelming, but this Retreat took that fear away. I was able to join other new teachers in a safe and supportive place. I am going into the new year more confident thanks to this Retreat."
- Karen Espinoza, 2019 participant
"I loved coming to the Retreat and meeting people who are in a similar position as me! It's definitely difficult to build your network as a new teacher. Coming from a school that has many experienced teachers it was great to speak with other new teachers who have experienced the same things I have or similar situations."
- Megan Hein, 2019 participant
"I enjoyed the Retreat. I feel that I am ready to take on my second year and I am excited to try some of the things I have learned about self-care and communication with parents. Thank you for the opportunity."
- Kelly Bourque, 2019 participant
"[The most meaningful part of the New Teachers Retreat was] having the opportunity to get to know other educators from different backgrounds. The approach was unique. I have never experiences a 'live in' situation with teachers in the past. The instructors had varied backgrounds that allowed teachers to 'see themselves' in their own practices."
- Shandolyn Anderson, 2019 participant
"I wish I could come again or come to a similar workshop every year just to recharge for a new year."
- Julie Caterino, 2018 participant
"I think that it was most important to build a community with teachers that are also new. We have struggles that are different than our colleagues who are well into their careers."
- Abby Gerrish, 2018 participant
"I am very thankful that you made this retreat happen. It has made me feel very connected to other first year teachers. It was great knowing I wasn't the only one that had struggles their first year. It also renewed my love for teaching and makes me super excited for the next school year."
- Ally Lewko, 2018 participant
"This was probably the most well-done professional development event I've ever been to, and it's amazing that it's run by teachers and professionals and not a corporation or someone trying to sell a product. I feel much more comfortable about myself as a teacher. Sometimes it's nice to know that others are in the same boat as you, and collaboration with others with the same amount of experience is so beneficial. I loved that it was specifically for new teachers. I understand the price is a concern for many, but it is well-worth the cost."
-Christina Anderson, 2018 participant
"The self care session really helped me realize how important it is for me to take care of myself and put my own well-being for my work."
- Ayanna Hudson, 2018 participant
“This is probably one of the most well-organized and well-structured PD programs that I have taken part in during my first three years in the field. I am looking forward to sharing this program with my school, my colleagues, and other young teachers in my life. I am truly thankful for this experience and for having the opportunity to network with so many amazing professionals in our field. Thank you!!!”
- Casey McGill, 2017 participant
“It was to nice gain and learn from different perspectives. The sessions provided me with a deeper understanding that I can take with me into year two!”
- Danielle Spencer, 2017 participant
“The informal conversations I had with other participants were the most meaningful part of the experience to me. I learned so much from the teaching stories other new teachers shared with me. It was validating to know that I wasn't alone in having challenges as a new teacher, and it was also useful to be able to discuss solutions to our struggles. I also like talking with teachers who teach in communities different from the one in which I teach. Talking with teachers in other states, in suburban communities, and in rural communities was informative to me (I teach in Boston). I also liked talking with new teachers at different ages and stages of life than me.”
- Billy Rutherford, 2017 participant
“I would recommend it because I felt like having this community of new teachers is effective. Between the PD sessions and the free time spent with one another, it was an excellent weekend.
I am looking forward to implementing more concrete routines and taking care of myself more.”
- Meagen Berquist, 2017 participant
“The instructors did an amazing job organizing and producing this retreat. The level of care and commitment was exceptional and I truly felt they were happy to be here and enjoyed the process.”
- Bethany Gately, 2017 participant