2019 Teacher and Principal Evaluation Policy
The state should require objective measures of student growth to be included in a teacher's evaluation score.
Impact of Student Growth: South Dakota requires student growth to be a "significant" factor in evaluation scores. Teachers assigned to tested grades and subjects may use data from state assessments as part of the student learning objective (SLO) process to prioritize the learning content and analyze data to establish student baseline knowledge. Teachers of non-tested grades and subjects must include district-, school-, or teacher-developed assessments.
State's Role in Evaluation System: South Dakota districts design evaluation systems based on criteria articulated by the state; the state approves these systems.
ARSD 24:57 South Dakota Teacher Effectiveness Handbook https://doe.sd.gov/teachereffectiveness/documents/Handbook.pdf
Due to South Dakota's strong policies in this area, no recommendations are provided.
South Dakota was helpful in providing NCTQ with facts that enhanced 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.