In a recent Education Week article, Charlotte Danielson, author of the Framework for Teaching, wrote about her plan to rethink teacher evaluation. Danielson describes the difficulty in differentiating great teaching from good or mediocre teaching. She points out that there is also not a consensus in how individuals should be determined as a good or great teacher with states using a variety of different measures. Therefore, Danielson proposes a rethink of the way we think about teacher evaluation. If around 94% of teachers are practicing at the standard or above the standard, we should focus on their professional development with a focus on continued learning. Danielson points out four important characteristics of professional learning:
- It requires active engagement from the teacher, using self-reflection and assessment.
- Trust must be created between the teacher and the school and district.
- An expectation must be set that there is always something to learn.
- Policy and decision makers must realize that professional learning is not “One size fits all.” Often the most learning happens from colleagues.
Danielson then goes on to explain her idea for a comprehensive personnel policy to go along with these professional learning requirements. What do you think of this redesign of teacher evaluation? What would you add? What would you take away?