News in Brief
Most Teachers on Par in New Fla. Evaluations
The Florida department of education released its first report on new, controversial evaluations for teachers last week.
The test-score-driven evaluations—dubbed "value added"—were mandated by the Florida legislature last year and combine traditional observations with student scores and other data.
The new evaluations rate teachers if they are "highly effective," "effective," "need improvement," "developing," or "unsatisfactory" for the 2011-12 school year.
Among teachers evaluated with the new data-driven formula, 22 percent were ranked highly effective, 75 percent were rated effective, and barely 2 percent were told they need improvement. About a quarter of Florida teachers were not included, according to the report.
A final report for 2011-12 will be available in January. The results for districts vary. For example, the number of teachers who "need improvement" in the 260,000-student Broward district was 238, compared to nearly 2,000 in 100,000-student Pinellas school system. Districts have flexibility in how they include student performance in evaluations. Also, the state and district administrators showed an "abundance of caution" in the first rollout, said Kathy Hebda, the state's deputy chancellor for educator quality.
Vol. 32, Issue 14, Pages 4-5