October 26, 2011
"Teacher evaluation must always be, first and foremost, about the continuous
improvement of teaching in every classroom."
Statement by Randi Weingarten,
President of the American Federation of Teachers,
On the NCTQ Report on Teacher Evaluation
WASHINGTON—We agree with some of the lessons contained in the National Council on Teacher Quality's new report, "State of the States: Trends and Early Lessons on Teacher Evaluation and Effectiveness Policies," including the notions that teacher evaluation should be about helping all teachers improve and that test scores should not be the sole determining factor of teacher effectiveness.
Teacher evaluation must always be, first and foremost, about the continuous improvement of teaching in every classroom. These systems need to focus on the growth of teachers during the school year and throughout their careers, not simply on end-of-year personnel decisions.
The voice of teachers, discounted in the NCTQ report, is the key to developing and implementing a teacher evaluation system that is good for students and fair to teachers.
Most important, evaluations must be part of a 360-degree system of accountability that applies to all who affect our children's education, not just teachers.
Follow AFT President Randi Weingarten: twitter.com/rweingarten.
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The AFT represents 1.5 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.