The National Journal launched a discussion of teacher evaluation today. Here’s my take.
We need to improve observation and value-added data to dramatically improve teacher evaluation. The best observation system I’ve seen is KC KS where teaching is a public act and where teachers receive frequent feedback on a well developed instructional framework–it’s real time, broad based, and useful.
Value-added measures should incorporate periodic as well as summative assessment–it shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone at the end of the year when a third grade classroom fails to make a year of progress in reading. I’m hoping that the $350 million the feds plan to spend on assessment around the Common Core results in a new generation of adaptive online assessment that with better data systems give us much better real time data about student progress. Frequent conversations about a body of evidence should replace ‘gotcha’ use of end of year standardized tests.
As Rozman points out, this gets a bit more complicated at the secondary level especially outside core subjects but the basic frame of frequent conversations about data and observation feedback should become a regular part of teacher evaluation.