Evaluating Teachers During the Pandemic


In a recent article published by the National Council on Teacher Quality, there are new trends on how states are proceeding with evaluations for the 2020-2021 school year. COVID-19 has affected nearly every aspect of the education system and schools have had to quickly adapt to new teaching and learning environments. Whether in person or remote, how are schools properly evaluating teachers?

NCTQ ongoing research tracks how states will proceed with evaluating teachers. Their analysis examines topics like whether summative evaluations will be required, whether states that required objective measures of student growth prior to the pandemic will continue to require them this year, and whether any modifications have been made to the measure of professional practice. As of mid-October, almost half of all states released teacher evaluation plans for 2020-2021. Below are some of the trends worth noting.

  • Of the 24 states that have released guidance, 21 are still requiring summative evaluations.
  • 19 of the states required objective measures of student growth prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and 9 of them have suspended those measures for this school year.
  • New Jersey canceled statewide student assessments in spring 2020. Teacher evaluation scores will now be based 85% on classroom observations and 15% on student growth objectives which are long-term academic goals for students that are set by teachers at the start of the school year.
  • Delaware, Connecticut, Hawaii, Minnesota, New Jersey, and South Carolina have made changes in the number of required observations or what qualifies as an observation.
  • Most states are releasing best practices regarding observations for virtual teaching and scaling back the number of observable criteria.

How does your state plan to proceed when it comes to teacher evaluations? Find out more from NCTQ here.

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