Identifying Effective Teachers Policy
The state should require annual evaluations of all teachers.
Regrettably, Alaska does not ensure that all teachers are evaluated annually.
Although Alaska requires at least annual evaluations for all teachers who "met the district performance standards during the previous year," the state allows districts to limit the evaluation of nonprobationary teachers who consistently exceed the district performance standards to one evaluation every two years.
Annual evaluations for probationary teachers in Alaska must include two classroom observations. However, there appears to be no indication from the state when these observations should occur or if teachers are offered any immediate feedback regarding their performance.
Alaska Statute 14.20.149
Require annual formal evaluations for all teachers.
All teachers in Alaska should be evaluated annually, even those who consistently exceed district performance standards. Rather than treated as mere formalities, these teacher evaluations should serve as important tools for rewarding good teachers, helping average teachers improve and holding weak teachers accountable for poor performance.
Base evaluations on multiple observations.
To guarantee that annual evaluations are based on an adequate collection of information, Alaska should require multiple observations for all teachers, even those who have nonprobationary status.
Ensure that new teachers are observed and receive feedback early in the school year.
It is critical that schools and districts closely monitor the performance of new teachers. Alaska should ensure that its new teachers get the support they need and that supervisors know early on which new teachers may be struggling or at risk for unacceptable levels of performance.
Alaska recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.