Teacher and Principal Evaluation Policy
The state should meaningfully assess principal performance. This goal was new in 2017.
Objective Student Growth Measures: Pennsylvania requires student performance to comprise 50 percent of a principal's evaluation rating. This is broken down as follows: building-level data accounts for 15 percent; correlation data accounts for 15 percent, and elective data accounts for 20 percent.
Link to Teacher Effectiveness/Instructional Leadership: Pennsylvania requires that a principal's professional practice is evaluated based on four domains, one of which is "leadership for learning," and requires principals to "ensure that a Standards Aligned System is in place to address the linkage of curriculum, instruction, assessment, data on student learning and teacher effectiveness based on research and best practices."
Improvement Plans: Pennsylvania requires that all principals who receive an overall performance rating of needs improvement or failing are placed on a performance improvement plan.
Surveys: Pennsylvania explicitly allows family, parent, school, and community "feedback."
As a result of Pennsylvania's strong principal effectiveness policies, no recommendations are provided.
Pennsylvania recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.
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.