Littleford & Associates has assisted over 500 schools world wide with the development of teacher evaluation and assessment programs that are effective and supported by boards, administrators and teachers. These systems, built with the full participation and support of teachers, are designed to: provide specific feedback; enhance the collegial dialogue; encourage professional and personal growth; improve instruction; affirm good teaching; provide a basis for retention/promotion decisions; and if desired, serve as a credible basis for performance based pay AND have faculty support.
The measurement of students’ achievement in the classroom, and in turn, the quality of classroom instruction increasingly are receiving national attention. Leading newspapers in the US have weighed the merits of evaluating teachers on the basis of meeting clear performance standards, versus amassing years of service or graduate credits.
In independent and international schools as well, teacher evaluation or appraisal is a high priority as parents and boards become more interested in holding schools accountable. The goals for evaluation systems and the way in which they are developed are crucial to their long-term effectiveness and faculty support. Peer review, portfolio based assessment, and similar systems often offer little substantive feedback to teachers and seldom lead to “paper trails” that are meaningful and helpful. Teachers genuinely interested in self-improvement become frustrated by inconsistent or no evaluation, poor feedback and the lack of follow up in the form of concrete strategies and professional development tied to improvement goals.
Effective teacher evaluation incorporates approaches that ensure integrity and accountability while supporting teachers, encouraging growth and providing honest regular feedback.