Yesterday, Connecticut’s State Board of Education unanimously approved the adoption of teacher and administrator evaluation guidelines, now known as “Core Requirements”. The Core Requirements, which were developed by the Performance Evaluation Advisory Council (PEAC) after almost two years of work, call for an unprecedented amount of feedback and support to be provided to teachers and school administrators and factor student performance into evaluations. 

 Teacher and Administrator Evaluation Process and Components

The approved Core Requirements lay the foundation for a comprehensive and standardized system for teacher and administrator evaluations based, in part, on student performance. The teacher and administrator evaluation process will center around three annual conferences between a teacher or administrator and their evaluator: an initial goal-setting conference where the teacher or administrator meets with the evaluator to establish student learning objectives and goals, followed by a mid-year check-in to review the teacher or administrator’s progress toward their objectives and an end-of-year conference to review the teacher or administraror’s observed practice and evidence of student academic achievement, including a self-assessment. For the first time in state history, districts must provide teachers and school administrators with professional development and growth opportunities based on their strengths and areas for improvement in relation to student learning needs, as identified through the evaluation process, and develop individualized improvement plans for teachers and administrators who receive a rating of developing or below standard. Teachers will be evaluated on the following indicators:

  • Student academic growth (45%)
    • Standardized test (22.5%)
    • A maximum of one standardized test and a minimum of one measure that is not a standardized test (22.5%)
  • Observation of teacher practice by administrator (40%)
  • Parent or peer feedback (10%)
  • Whole-school student learning indicator or student feedback (5%)

Administrators will be evaluated on the following indicators:

  • Student academic growth (45%)
    • Standardized test, including the School Performance Index (22.5%)
    • Two local indicators of student growth (graduation rates for high schools must be included) (22.5%)
  • Observation of administrator performance and practice (40%)
  • Stakeholder feedback (10%)
  • Teacher effectiveness outcomes (5%)

The evaluator will complete the evaluation process by rating the teacher’s performance on a 4-tiered rubric: Exemplary, Proficient, Developing and Below Standard. Each district is responsible for defining effectiveness and ineffectiveness in relation to the indicators and ratings listed above. A demonstration of effective practice will serve as the basis for granting teachers tenure and ineffectiveness can serve as grounds for dismissal beginning in the 2014-2015 school year.

Next Steps

The adoption of teacher and administrator evaluation guidelines marks an important step in the implementation of the landmark education reform bill (Senate Bill 458) passed in May. Sixteen school districts have been approved to pilot the teacher and administrator evaluation Core Requirements in the upcoming school year. Support will be provided by the State Department of Education and the Neag School of Education at the University of Connecticut will conduct an analysis of the program. The goal of the pilot program is to work out any kinks in the Core Requirements before they are implemented statewide in the 2014-2015 school year. CCER would like to recognize the members of PEAC and the State Board of Education for their hard work and commitment to ensuring that all students in Connecticut receive a high-quality education. Stay tuned for updates and news as the State Board of Education, State Department of Education, and pilot districts begin to implement teacher and administrator evaluation systems based on the Core Requirements.

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