Teacher and Principal Evaluation Policy
The data and analysis on this page is from 2019. View and download the most recent policy data and analysis on Measures of Student Growth in Pennsylvania from the State of the States 2022: Teacher and Principal Evaluation Policies report.
The state should require objective measures of student growth to be included in a teacher's evaluation score. This goal is reorganized for 2019.
Impact of Student Growth: Pennsylvania requires student performance to count for 50 percent of a teacher's overall evaluation rating. This half must be based on multiple measures of student achievement and be comprised of the following: building-level data (15 percent), which must include student performance on assessments, value-added assessment system data, graduation rates, promotion rates; teacher-specific data (15 percent), including student achievement attributable to a specific teacher as measured by student performance on assessments, value-added assessment system data, progress in meeting student goals; and elective data (20 percent), including measures of student achievement that are locally developed.
State's role in evaluation system: Pennsylvania's Teacher Effectiveness Tool is the evaluation tool used for all teachers in the state.
PA Bulletin Vol 43, No 25 June 22, 2013 Student Performance Measures for Classroom Teachers FAQs: http://www.education.pa.gov/Documents/Teachers-Administrators/Educator%20Effectiveness/Student%20Performance%20Measures%20for%20Classroom%20Teachers%20FAQs.pdf
Due to Pennsylvania's strong policies in this area, no recommendations are provided.
Pennsylvania 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.