Building a Teaching Effectiveness Network

The Building a Teaching Effectiveness Network (BTEN) was designed to enable a diverse group of leaders to come together to address the growing problem of beginning teacher development and retention.

Across the United States, the demographics of teaching are changing. In 2011-2012, nearly a quarter of U.S. teachers had five or fewer years of experience and nearly 7 percent were brand new to the profession. Although beginning teachers bring new skills, perspectives, and energy into their classrooms, they also tend to leave the profession at high rates, with nearly half leaving the classroom in their first five years. The Building a Teaching Effectiveness Network brought together leaders in education practice, policy, and research to improve the development and retention of effective teachers in our nation’s schools.

Working with school districts, BTEN focuses on the needs of new teachers in urban schools as they learn to teach students well, collaborate with colleagues, engage families, and successfully navigate the policies and routines of their districts and schools. Through rapid, small-scale testing, principals and beginning teachers have worked to address feelings of burnout and increase confidence by developing a feedback protocol. BTEN is also working to improve the district systems and processes that support new teacher development.

BTEN is a partnership of the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and the Carnegie Foundation. BTEN is supported by The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.