Teacher Effectiveness – More Than A Single Measure

With the recent emphasis on preparing students for college-and-career, many have argued that a single test or measure is insufficient for adequately evaluating growth or indicating that students have a thorough understanding of their learning goals.  As educators, we know that multiple measures allow for a much more complete picture of student performance; particularly, if we’re also using that information to determine which teachers are most effective.

Many school districts are now employing new investigative processes and instruments in order to identify the strategies and techniques that effective teachers use in order to ensure their students are learning. Classroom observation rubrics should consider subject-specific knowledge as well as pedagogical methodology. And these tools should be employed over numerous occasions and/or lessons.  Additionally, classroom observations should be made by multiple observers.  Another resource for assessment of teacher effectiveness might include student perceptions of academic support and teacher expertise. While student gains across various types of assessments, including standardized tests, are also worth considering in teacher evaluations, to use only one method of assessment does not address the complex and multi-faceted nature of effective teaching.

It is important to find a balance between the multiple measures that identify the most successful teachers and the strategies they use rather than limiting such evaluations to student performance on standardized tests.


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