- The National Council on Teacher Quality’s latest report, “Running in Place: How New Teacher Evaluations Fail to Live Up to Promises,” criticizes states for limiting the impact of student growth measures on a teacher’s final rating.
- According to eSchool News, 30 states incorporate student growth into teacher evaluations, but only Indiana and Kentucky clearly articulate the learning goals students must accomplish for their teachers to achieve an “effective” rating.
- The remaining 28 states measure student growth but still allow a teacher to receive an overall rating of “effective” even if they get the lowest rating for that part of the evaluation, and the National Council on Teacher Quality argues states should not allow that to happen.
The Every Student Succeeds Act does not require states to evaluate teachers, taking away a federal mandate that preceded the creation of new evaluation systems that the NCTQ evaluated in its latest paper. Few expect states to abandon their evaluation systems, however, given the amount of work that went into creating them.
While it is important to get effective teachers in front of students, it is also important to remember how much teachers cannot control when they work in high-poverty schools. Family income is increasingly predictive of student test scores. Unduly penalizing teachers for predictable outcomes among students facing a range of barriers to learning could simply make it less likely teachers will take on the challenge.