In-classroom observations added to teacher evaluations

The Ohio legislature required the State Board of Education to develop a model of teacher evaluation that includes in-classroom evaluations as well as measuring and using students’ academic performance.  While some districts are piloting evaluation programs now to help fine-tune the systems, all districts will be required to adopt the new approach by the 2013-14 school year.

At Milford, we have been using pieces of the new approach for a couple years now.  Administrators from Superintendent Dr. Farrell down to Assistant Principals have been conducting “learning walks” where they visit classrooms on a regular basis.  They observe not only what the teacher is doing, but also how students react, how engaged they are, the questions they ask, and how the teacher guides the lesson.  This is not an evaluation – it is in addition, designed to help generate ideas for other classrooms and direction for all our teachers.

Our teachers have been very supportive of the learning walks, seeing them as ways to improve their own performance and help others.  The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports similar attitudes about the observations, hoping for constructive feedback and coaching.

As the State BOE and test districts work through the process of identifying how the new evaluation system will work, there are likely to be ongoing challenges.  However, the end result should hopefully help both our teachers and students.

2 Responses to “In-classroom observations added to teacher evaluations”

  1. Brenda Ely Says:

    I am happy to see that teacher evaluation will soon include an observation component. Feberal Head Start programs started using an observation assessment tool a few years ago and it has been valuable to our progress in the classroom.

  2. andreabrady Says:

    Brenda, it would be interesting to hear more about Child Focus’ experiences with this type of assessment tool, see what we can learn from what you’ve done. I think this type of assessment can be extremely valuable. So far, it has been; everyone involved has been very happy with the process & results. Hopefully it’ll just get better & better as we use & refine it.

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