The Texas Beginning Educator Support System (TxBESS), an initiative of the State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC), is designed to provide systematic support for beginning teachers in their first and second years on the job. Since the spring of 2000, over 5,000 beginning teachers have been supported through TxBESS. Partnerships among beginning teachers, local school districts, campuses, educator preparation entities, local businesses, and regional education centers have shared responsibility for the success of these of beginning teachers.

Supporting beginning teachers early in their careers leads to reduced turnover and a more experienced, better-qualified public school teaching staff. TxBESS is part of a coherent, standards-based system that begins with the state student standards and continues through pre-service preparation, induction, and in-service professional development. Beginning teachers who have TxBESS support will attain greater professional expertise more quickly than unsupported beginning teachers, which will in turn lead to higher academic achievement among Texas students.
To achieve this goal the TxBESS system has:

1. Developed an array of effective models of beginning teacher support based on the TxBESS Performance Standards and disseminated the models to the wider educational community;

2. Provided 10 percent of the state's beginning teachers with support teams consisting of mentors, the principal of the beginning teacher's campus, and representation from teacher preparation entities;

3. Provided each team member, including the beginning teacher, with training on the TxBESS Performance Standards and ongoing training and support;

4. Provided beginning teachers with coaching based on the TxBESS Activity Profile;

5. Improved the ability of beginning teachers to work successfully with diverse students and communities;

6. Provided a rich program of job-embedded, extended professional development for support team members-mentors, teacher educators, and building principals-that includes developing expertise in enhancing beginning teacher performance;

7. Enhanced building principals' abilities to establish a school climate that supports beginning teacher growth and retention;

8. Identified models of evaluating the impact of TxBESS and disseminated findings to the wider educational community; and

9. Stabilized the teaching force by reducing beginning teacher transfer rates within and across school districts.

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