A council working to develop new educator evaluation guidelines reached favorable consensus today on a basic framework that will meet the needs of Connecticut teachers. CEA has been a strong advocate for teachers as a member of the state Performance Evaluation Advisory Council (PEAC) that has been meeting for over a year.
“It was a compromise by consensus, which was reached after many months of long, tough conversations,” said Mary Loftus Levine, CEA executive director. “What the positive consensus shows is that all education stakeholders want the same results. And we and other members of PEAC are pleased to have developed a structure for a fair, reliable, and valid evaluation system with accountability for all. Student achievement is the overarching goal.”
CEA’s voice on the council has resulted in a framework which is consistent with the goal of elevating the teaching profession by holding everyone accountable, while producing a new evaluation system that is fair, valid, reliable, and useful. The area of greatest teacher concern and focus in PEAC’s work has been how to define, implement, and include “multiple indicators of student academic growth and development.”
In short, with today’s favorable consensus, PEAC is recommending a three-tiered system with no single test score or indicator being used to assess student learning. It has achieved this goal with fair and balanced weighted percentages as follows:
- Multiple indicators of student learning will count as 45% of the evaluation. Half of that 45% weight will come from a standardized test, which would be either the CMT, CAPT, or another valid, reliable test that measures student learning.
- Teacher performance and professional practice will be weighted at 40%.
- Other peer, student, and parent feedback will be weighted at 5% with professional activities counting for 10%.
The basic framework for new evaluation guidelines reached by consensus today will be the basis for guidelines that will advise local school districts as they go back and design local plans working with their local teachers unions. For districts that determine they don’t have the capacity to design their own local plans, the State Department of Education (SDE) will provide a model, detailed template. For districts that already have exceptional models, a waiver will be available from the SDE.
The next PEAC meeting is February 6, 2012, and much still needs to be accomplished to finalize the work done to date before it is presented to the State Board of Education on February 10.
PEAC is also working on administrator guidelines. CEA will share details as they are determined.