HISD to vote on new teacher evaluation program

May 12, 2011 2:37:31 PM PDT
HISD trustees will decide today whether to implement a modified teacher development and evaluation system that would give educators frequent feedback to guide their classroom efforts.

The proposed system, which received the school board's preliminary approval in April, would rate teachers based on multiple measures in three major categories: student performance, instructional practice and professional expectations. Teachers would be scored in each of the aforementioned categories and based on their total of their scores then rated as one of the following: Ineffective, Needs Improvement, Effective or Highly Effective.

The school district has been operation under an appraisal system created 20 years ago by the state; however, the current evaluation program has been showered with criticism by many HISD teachers and principals, who have said it is not providing them with meaningful feedback to improve student learning. So the district reviewed its plan and created the new proposal, which reflects input from more than 2,600 teachers, 500 school administrators, 500 parents and 600 community members.

Under the proposed system, teachers will be subjected to classroom observations, reviews of planning documents, and results of statewide, district-wide or teacher-created assessments.

The new evaluation system also would give teachers comprehensive feedback on their performance during three conferences with their appraiser each year. In addition, appraisers would conduct multiple classroom observations and walkthroughs throughout the year, each followed by in-person and written feedback.

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