Quantifying Teacher Effectiveness
Can you quantify the effectiveness of a good teacher? How much of that can be determined from student test scores? And how can teachers of untested subjects like the arts, physical education, and social studies be fairly evaluated? These are some of the questions raised in the newest edition of Policy Priorities, ASCD's quarterly policy newsletter, which examines U.S. efforts to transform its teacher evaluation systems.
The new issue describes how major initiatives like the Race to the Top competition, the No Child Left Behind state waiver requirements, and the Common Core State Standards have propelled state efforts to rapidly overhaul their evaluation systems and link teacher ratings to student outcome data. Policy Priorities looks at obstacles that states and districts have faced in implementing these new systems, including the shortcomings of value-added analysis; their efforts to incorporate multiple measures—such as classroom observations, samples of student work, teacher lesson plans, peer review, and student feedback—into evaluation systems; and examples of how some states and districts are developing ways to determine both student achievement and teacher performance in untested subjects.
You can also hear ASCD's interview with Lauren Sartain, coauthor of a report on teacher evaluations in the Chicago Public Schools system. Sartain shares her research findings on successful and unsuccessful evaluation practices and the evolution of teacher evaluation in Chicago.
In addition, we invite you to participate in the ASCD Forum, an online discussion focused on the question, "How do we define and measure teacher and principal effectiveness?" To learn more about the discussion, which runs until April 22, join the ASCD Forum group on the ASCD EDge® social networking platform or search for the ASCD Forum on Twitter using the hashtag #ASCDForum. Feedback and comments from you and your colleagues will help inform ASCD's future efforts on this crucial topic.
- Explore this edition of Policy Priorities.
- Join the ASCD Forum.
- See how your state's evaluation system stacks up in the latest ASCD Policy Points (PDF).
- Watch for the next issue of Policy Priorities, which will examine the ways that evaluation systems can help drive professional growth.
Become an advocate for education! Join Educator Advocates to get informed about the education policy and politics that affect your day-to-day work, get involved by joining with colleagues to help lawmakers make the best education decisions, and make a difference for our schools and our students.