Teaching Profession News in Brief

D.C.'s Review System Targets Hundreds for Firing, Bonuses

By Stephen Sawchuk — August 09, 2011 1 min read

District of Columbia school officials have announced that 663 teachers will qualify for bonuses or raises based on high performance in the second year of the IMPACT teacher-evaluation system, while 206 teachers, or 5 percent of the school district’s teaching force, will be dismissed based on those results.

The spread of scores is similar to last year’s, with the same percentage of teachers—16 percent—earning the top rating of “highly effective.” There was a slight decline in those receiving one of the lowest two ratings, “ineffective” and “minimally effective.” Meanwhile, some 560 teachers effectively on probation earned high enough ratings to keep their jobs.

Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson said the data show the system has been implemented “evenly and objectively,” but the president of the Washington Teachers’ Union, Nathan Saunders, said it unfairly penalized teachers in the poorest schools.

The IMPACT system debuted during the 2009-10 school, when Michelle A. Rhee was chancellor. It is one of the first operational teacher-evaluation systems in the nation to grade teachers using a combination of classroom observations and a measure of growth in students test scores.

A version of this article appeared in the August 10, 2011 edition of Education Week as D.C.'s Review System Targets Hundreds for Firing, Bonuses

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