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APPR Workgroups

What are the APPR Workgroups?

Two Workgroups were formed in the Fall of 2018 to examine New York’s evaluation system and create recommendations for how the system could better support teaching and learning.

The Evaluation Workgroup focused on the framework for evaluation, including requirements for student performance, observation, and other measures of educator effectiveness.

The Assessment Workgroup explored the use of innovative and authentic assessments (e.g., performance-based assessment, portfolio assessments, etc.) to determine best practices and requirements for the use of assessment as part of educator evaluation, including how these assessments can pinpoint student understanding in meaningful ways and provide educators with valuable information to inform their instruction. 

Why did the Department conduct these Workgroups?

The Department believes that teacher and principal evaluations can be a critical tool to help school districts and BOCES recruit, develop, and retain a highly effective educator workforce. However, stakeholders at all levels have consistently expressed concerns regarding the current APPR framework.

Because of these concerns, the Regents put in place an APPR Transition Period which lasted through the 2018-19 school year in order to give the Department time to review and revise its Learning Standards, State assessment program, and evaluation system.

Who was selected as the facilitators for the Workgroups?

The Workgroup facilitators were chosen through a Request for Proposals (RFP) process. The Assessment Workgroup was led by Learner Centered Initiatives, Ltd. (LCI) and the Evaluation Workgroup was led by Westat.

Who served on the Workgroups?  How did you choose participants?

We solicited participation for the Assessment and Evaluation Workgroups in two ways:

  1. We invited key stakeholder groups[1] and BOCES District Superintendents to nominate individuals for each Workgroup.  Nominees were then sent an application packet. 
  2. We also invited all educators who completed the Commissioner’s APPR Survey to submit an application for participation.

We received an overwhelming response from educators across the state expressing an interest in participating in one of the Workgroups. The Office of Educator Quality and Professional Development staff read through all the applications, which included a personal statement of contribution, in order to narrow down the highly qualified applicant pool to reflect the geographic and demographic diversity of our State.  

Stakeholder groups were also invited to select one representative for their organization to participate in each of the Workgroups.

Approximately 60 stakeholders were selected for each Workgroup, each of which was composed primarily of teachers and principals with the remainder being representatives of statewide stakeholder organizations.

When and where did the Workgroups meet?

Each Workgroup intended to meet six times over the course of the 2018-19 school year – beginning in early fall and continuing through the early Spring of 2019. However, before the Workgroups could complete their charge, both houses of the State Legislature passed an amendment to Education Law §3012-d on January 23, 2019. On April 12, 2019, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law Chapter 59 of the Laws of 2019, which amended Education Law §3012-d. 

The Evaluation Workgroup met two times in-person in Albany and had one virtual meeting.  The Assessment Workgroup met once in-person and had two virtual meetings.  The Department convened both Workgroups together for one final meeting in May 2019 to discuss the statutory changes to the evaluation system.

[1] Council of School Supervisors & Administrators; Empire State School Administrators Association (ESSAA); New York State Council of School Superintendents (NYSCOSS); New York State Federation of School Administrators (NYSFSA); New York State Parent Teacher Association (NYSPTA); New York State School Boards Association (NYSSBA); New York State United Teachers (NYSUT); School Administrators Association of New York State (SAANYS); and United Federation of Teachers (UFT)