Last week, we discussed how educators can use observation data to improve teaching and learning. This week, we are giving you three more tips—but this time with a focus on administrators! The following details how administrators can delve into their teacher evaluation observations and results to find concrete, measurable ways to better the quality of their school or district.
As an evaluator, you may be required to do multiple classroom observations throughout the year for individual teachers and your staff. Once you complete the observations, the next crucial step is to apply your data and findings. Yes, you will use the observation data as the basis for the final teacher effectiveness rating. While the final evaluation is summative in nature, the data from the observation can and should be used in a formative way.
Over the past decade, there has been a major overhaul in how we think about teacher evaluations. Much of the conversation about teacher evaluations shifted after a landmark study—The Widget Effect (2009)—which found that although 98% of teachers studied received “satisfactory” marks on their teacher evaluations, teachers were frustrated by a lack of recognition for their work, and they often needed additional support. If teacher evaluations don’t identify and address the differences between teacher performance and how those differences affect student performance, then what’s the point?