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: West Virginia requires student growth to count for 20 percent of the evaluation rating.
West Virginia does not explicitly 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.
State's role in evaluation system: West Virginia districts use a statewide evaluation system.
West Virginia BOE Policy 5310 http://apps.sos.wv.gov/adlaw/csr/readfile.aspx?DocId=26881&Format=PDF Summative Evaluation: http://wvde.state.wv.us/evalwv/summative-evaluation.html
Require instructional effectiveness to be a determinative criterion of any teacher evaluation.
Although West Virginia requires that objective evidence of student growth be included in a teacher's evaluation rating, it does not play a profound role in a teacher's overall evaluation rating. West Virginia 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.
West Virginia was helpful in providing NCTQ with facts that enhanced this analysis. The state indicated that it used its waiver rights to remove the 5 percent requirement tied to the general summative assessment, until such time as the legislature can address and remove the requirement through code. (In previous years, the 20 percent student growth requirement was broken down into 15 percent student growth as measured by student learning goals and 5 percent student learning growth as measured by the schoolwide score on the state summative assessment.)
West Virginia also provided that with the passage of the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESSA), there is no requirement specifically for educator evaluation. "Consistent with ESEA section 1111(g)(1)(B), this description should not be construed as requiring a state to develop or implement a teacher, principal, or other school leader evaluation system."
Finally, West Virginia reiterated that its Educator Evaluation System does use student growth through the process of developing two student learning goals that measure growth between two points in time chosen by the educator from multiple measures. The state does not dictate to local education agencies how to use the student learning goals, only that progress must be made toward the goal of an accomplished rating.
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.