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: New Hampshire does not require measures of student growth in its teacher evaluation system.
New Hampshire's Task Force on Effective Teaching outlines a model system that incorporates measures of student performance and multiple rating categories. However, these elements are not mandatory. Districts may adopt this model in its entirety or use it as a starting point for designing their own systems. "It is clearly understood that the sole authority for the content and methodology of a teacher and leader evaluation system rests with the local school district. The State Model is an expression of what the Task Force considers 'best practices' in teacher evaluation."
State's role in evaluation system: New Hampshire gives local school boards the authority to set policies for teacher evaluation systems and gives school principals the responsibility for conducting these personnel evaluations. New Hampshire is silent about the content of and the expectation for these evaluations.
Part Ed 303 Duties of School Boards: 303.01 (a); Part Ed 304 Duties of School Principals: 304.01 (c) The New Hampshire Task Force of Effective Teaching: Phase II http://education.nh.gov/teaching/documents/phase2report.pdf
Require instructional effectiveness to be a determinative criterion of any teacher evaluation.
New Hampshire should require that objective measures of student growth be included in a teacher's evaluation rating, and that such measures play a profound role in a teacher's overall evaluation rating. Specifically, a teacher should not be able to earn an overall rating of effective if he or she is less-than-effective at increasing student growth.
New Hampshire recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.
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.