Like other states across the country, mine (Massachusetts) is in the midst of piloting a new teacher evaluation system. I'm a teacher, so this matters deeply to me. But it also matters to anyone with any stake in education, as the impact of how we measure teacher effectiveness will be immense.
Now, how are these evaluations going so far? Last month, Teach Plus Teaching Policy Fellows sent a survey to teachers in Massachusetts's Level 4 Turnaround Schools, who are currently piloting the new system. While the purpose of pilots is, of course, to iron out the kinks in something before rolling it out more broadly, the data compiled from the 112 responses is still concerning and eye-opening, and it points to some major areas for improvement:
• 41% of teachers rated their evaluator as fair or poor overall • 35% rated the quality of their evaluator's feedback as fair or poor • 45% rated their evaluator fair or poor in content knowledge