Teacher and Principal Evaluation Policy
The state should require instructional effectiveness to be the determinative criterion of any teacher evaluation. The bar for this goal was raised in 2017.
Impact of Student Growth: Louisiana requires that 50 percent of a teacher's evaluation rating is comprised of student growth (35 percent is measured by value-added measures for teachers who have VAM and 15 percent is measured by student learning targets). For teachers of grades and subjects tested by state standardized assessments, student growth on such tests is used to measure their impact on student learning. For teachers of grades and subjects not tested by state standardized tests, targets established by teachers and evaluators are used to measure their impact on student learning.
Louisiana does not require that teachers meet student growth goals or be rated at least effective for the student growth portion of their evaluation to earn an overall rating of effective. The state provides mandatory scoring ranges. Student growth and qualitative assessment are each represented by a subscore between one (lowest) and four (highest). These two scores are averaged for the final composite score. A teacher may be rated effective: proficient (the second highest rating) with an average of 2.5. Therefore, if a teacher earns a one for student growth and a four for qualitative assessment, this teacher could be rated overall effective: proficient.
State's Role in Evaluation System: Louisiana requires teachers to be evaluated under its statewide evaluation system, Compass.
Title 28 Part CXLVII Bulletin 130 Act 504 (2016) Act 498 (2016)
Require instructional effectiveness to be a determinative criterion of any teacher evaluation.
Although Louisiana requires that objective evidence of student growth be included in a substantial way in a teacher's evaluation rating, it does not play a profound role in a teacher's overall evaluation rating. Louisiana should ensure that a teacher is not able to earn an overall rating of effective if he or she is rated less-than-effective at increasing student growth.
Louisiana further provided that that its teacher evaluation system requires teacher evaluations to include 50 percent student growth and 50 percent professional practice.
7A: Measures of Student Growth
Many factors should be considered in formally evaluating a teacher; however, nothing is more important than effectiveness in the classroom. Value-added models are an important tool for measuring student achievement and school effectiveness. These models have the ability to measure individual students' learning gains, controlling for students' previous knowledge and background characteristics. While some research suggests value-added models are subject to bias and statistical limitations, rich data and strong controls can eliminate error and bias. In the area of teacher quality, examining student growth offers a fairer and potentially more meaningful way to evaluate a teacher's effectiveness than other methods schools use.
Unfortunately, districts have used many evaluation instruments, including some mandated by states, which are structured so that teachers can earn a satisfactory rating without any evidence that they are sufficiently advancing student learning in the classroom. Teacher evaluation instruments should include factors that combine both human judgment and objective measures of student learning.