Select and preliminary weight the assessments for use in educator evaluations
After taking an inventory of available assessments and determining which assessments apply to different teacher types, the next step is narrowing down the selection of assessments to select those that meet quality criteria specified in the sample Assessment Review Tool. In other words, any measure of student learning that is used in educator evaluations should be closely related to the standards being taught, curriculum, scope and sequence, and expected outcomes for a given class/course. Districts are also encouraged to consider the use of district assessments that are identified as targets and/or interim measures in the Unified Improvement Plans (UIP) as progress monitoring tools during the school year. A district decision to use targets specified in the UIP should be based on a close examination of whether those assessments are tightly aligned with course expectations and whether a good rationale can be established to use results from those assessments individually or collectively.
For example, results from a district math test may not serve as an appropriate measure for individual attribution for a social studies teacher since the test content may not have a clear relationship to the course expectations for the social studies teacher. However, the results from the same math test may be considered for use as a collective attribution measure for the same social studies teacher if a clear argument can be made by the district that all teachers are required to incorporate some level of math practices across content areas and those practices are captured by the math test being considered. Districts are advised to select assessments that are aligned with school and district goals and that generate results that educators use to inform their instruction and most importantly, are aligned with the learning goals specified in Step 1. State Board Rules require that, when available, results from statewide assessment be included in educator evaluations. See Textbox 2 for important information about the timing of these results and sample approaches for their use.
Textbox 2: An important note about the timing and release of results
The timing of results from state summative assessments is an important consideration for use in educator evaluations. For example, current year state summative results are not available before the end of the current school year. Since it is required that results from statewide summative assessments be included in educator evaluations, it is suggested that districts select an approach for including the results that makes sense to their educators.
One approach is to use prior year statewide summative results in current year calculations. Results from other measures, such as locally-developed interim assessments, may generate results that are available at the end of each instructional period and that are directly related to the group of students that the educator taught in the current year. This means that the measures of student learning portion of an educator’s evaluation would consist of both prior year and current year data. It is important to understand this in order to weight each measure so that there is relevance for the educator and so that results from the prior year are not weighted such that a higher rating negates local measures, or that a low rating prohibits an educator from overcoming it with local measures.
Other approaches to address the timing of statewide summative assessment results are to wait to finalize a rating until the summative data can be incorporated into the evaluation or to use rolling averages. CDE will be exploring a range of approaches with districts to provide further guidance on how best to address the timing of assessment results and their incorporation into educators’ evaluations.