FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Chancellor Tisch And Commissioner King Praise Evaluation Agreement
Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl H. Tisch and State Education Commissioner John B. King, Jr. said today the newly agreed upon teacher and principal evaluation system was made possible by a collaborative willingness to implement a process that will help improve student performance. The two education leaders praised Governor Cuomo’s leadership in driving a resolution to the complicated negotiations. King said the new system will protect more than $2.5 billion in federal Race to the Top funds and other education funds over two years, and, more importantly, help improve student performance.
"This agreement is a significant improvement over the evaluation law passed in 2010," Chancellor Tisch said. "But our work is by no means over. The Regents have adopted a major education reform plan, and teacher and principal evaluations are just a part of that reform. Today is a good day, but the best day will be when we’ve fully implemented the Regents reforms and we’ve made sure all our students get the education they need to succeed in college and careers."
"The goal is and always has been to help students – to give them every opportunity to succeed in college and careers," Commissioner King. "To make that happen, we need to improve teaching and learning. We owe it to our students to make sure every classroom is led by an effective teacher and every school is led by an effective principal. Today, the Governor’s leadership and his commitment to our students have helped us take a strong step toward that goal."
King said teachers will be rated as either ineffective; developing; effective; or highly effective based on a scale of 100 points.
Other key provisions of the agreement include:
State assessments can be used for up to 40 percent of the evaluation if the local 20 percent share based on state assessments is used differently and collectively bargained;
The remaining subjective, collectively bargained 60 percent must consist of tightly defined, research backed measures. A majority (at least 31 percent) of the 60 percent must be based on classroom observations by a principal or trained administrator;
There must be multiple observations and at least one observation must be unannounced;
Teachers rated ineffective on student performance based on objective assessments must be rated ineffective overall. Teachers who are developing or ineffective will get assistance and support to improve performance. Teachers who remain ineffective can be removed from classrooms;
All evaluations must be done annually by September 1;
All evaluation plans are subject to review and approval by the Commissioner to ensure rigor, quality and consistency with standards;
The Commissioner has the authority to require corrective action, including the use of independent evaluators, when districts evaluate their teachers positively regardless of students’ academic progress; and
Appeals must be timely and expeditious and districts may terminate probationary teachers/principals or grant or deny tenure while an appeal is pending.
King noted Governor Cuomo has included a "shot clock" in his budget proposal to link implementation of the new teacher evaluation system to increases in school aid. Districts not finalizing an approvable evaluation plan by next January risk losing their share of state aid increases. King said setting a deadline with consequences for districts will help ensure prompt effective implementation of the new evaluation system.
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