The 2012-13 school year will see Page Unified School District implementing some of the key elements of a new law that revises the process used for evaluating the performance of teachers and principals.
Included in the law, House Bill 2823, is an alternate timeline, which allows school districts or charter schools to postpone full implementation of the new evaluations until school year 2013-14.
According to a presentation by the district’s assistant superintendent Perry Berry at the Aug. 7 school board meeting, evaluations will consist of three parts and will be weighted: 50 percent of each evaluation will be from teacher appraisal, 33 percent from student growth and 17 percent from goal setting.
Berry outlined the key components of each area, explaining that for the teacher-appraisal portion each instructor will go through two formal and three informal evaluation sessions in which their performance, planning and classroom environment will be observed.
The student-growth portion is a measure of the impact the teacher or principal is having on the educational progress of students.
The goal-setting portion requires that each teacher develop two goals and submit them to the principal for approval.
“PUSD uses a single administration of the Tripod Survey, a reliable measure and predictor of student achievement gains, to gauge seven areas of classroom life and teaching practices for one of the two goals,” Berry said.
The law states that each school will be required to develop a plan to determine how the evaluations will guide professional development.
According to Berry, the plan chosen for area schools will follow the Danielson Framework, a proven successful teacher evaluation process.
According to danielsongroup.org, the process involves monitoring four domain areas: planning and preparation, classroom environment, professional responsibilities and instruction. Each of the domains has criteria that teachers will be held accountable for.
Berry said the committee chose that model because it is research driven.
“I feel good about it for two reasons, one it meets framework requirements, and two it reflects collaboration, but only time will tell.”
Berry added that there will be dramatic changes coming due to this new bill and even more so once the mandate takes hold next year.
“This is new ground we are walking on,” he said.
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