2017 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: Kansas requires "student performance" to be considered in teacher evaluation scores. However, Kansas's teacher evaluation system does not guarantee that student performance will include objective measures of student growth. According to recent guidance by the state, districts may determine student performance based on local expectations. The list of student performance indicators currently being utilized in the 2017-2018 school year includes the following: attendance, civic engagement, competition results, differentiated lesson plans, and portfolios.
State's Role in Evaluation System: Kansas districts are encouraged to use the state's model, Kansas Educator Evaluation Protocol (KEEP), but they may submit their own evaluation systems for state approval.
Kansas Statutes 72-9004 Guidance for Defining Student Performance and Identifying Indicators: http://www.ksde.org/Agency/Division-of-Learning-Services/Teacher-Licensure-and-Accreditation/Educator-Evaluations/Student-Performance/Defining-Student-Performance-and-Identifying-Indicators Matrix: http://www.ksde.org/Portals/0/TLA/Educator%20Eval/2016%20Educator%20Performance%20Rating%20Matrix%20.pdf
Require instructional effectiveness to be a determinative criterion of any teacher evaluation.
Kansas 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.
Kansas was helpful in providing NCTQ with the facts necessary for 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.