Teacher and Principal Evaluation Policy
The state should meaningfully assess principal performance. This goal was new in 2017.
Objective Student Growth Measures: Indiana requires that student growth "significantly inform" principal evaluation ratings.
Link to Teacher Effectiveness/Instructional Leadership: Indiana state policy does not explicitly link principal evaluations and teacher effectiveness/instructional leadership.
Improvement Plans: Indiana requires plans of improvement for principals rated ineffective or improvement necessary.
Surveys: Indiana state policy does not mention surveys for the purposes of principal evaluation.
Indiana Code 20-28-11.5 511 IAC 10-6-3
Make an explicit link between principal evaluation and teacher effectiveness/instructional leadership.
Because the time principals spend on organizational management, instructional programming, and teacher evaluation is critically important for positive effects on both teachers and students, Indiana should evaluate its principals—to some degree—on teacher effectiveness and instructional leadership.
Require or explicitly allow surveys.
Indiana should require—or at the very least, explicitly allow—survey data to be included in a principal's evaluation rating. These data could be derived from school climate, teacher, student, or school community surveys and are necessary to to provide data about a principal's overall leadership of the school community.
Indiana noted that although its state law and policy do not explicitly mention surveys, the use of surveys is allowable. The law includes a list of components that a school corporation may consider in developing its performance evaluation model; one of the optional components is: "Other items considered important by the school corporation in developing each student to the student's maximum intellectual potential and performance."
7G: Principal Effectiveness
Research demonstrates that there is a clear link between school leadership and school outcomes. Principals foster school improvement by shaping school goals, policies and practices, and social and organizational structures. Principals vary significantly in their effectiveness, and research suggests that high-quality principals positively affect student achievement, in-school discipline, parents' perceptions of schools, and school climates. Further, principals affect teacher retention and recruitment; effective principals are more adept at retaining effective teachers and removing ineffective teachers. The time principals spend on organizational management, instructional programming, and teacher evaluation is critically important for positive effects on teachers and students. Because principals are an essential component of creating successful schools, their effectiveness should be regularly evaluated by trained evaluators on systems that include objective measures. Such systems will help to ensure that all principals receive the feedback and support necessary to improve their practice and, ultimately, student and school outcomes.