Putting Education Reform To The Test

Florida Department of Education Asking You To Evaluate Teacher Evaluations


Teachers can tell DOE what they think about the way they're being evaluated at a series of workshops this week around Florida.

The Florida Department of Education is drafting rules surrounding the way Florida teachers and school administrators are evaluated.

DOE is holding a series of workshops this week seeking input on the teacher evaluation system as well as the value-added model, or VAM.

Teachers will be able to give DOE their opinions about the new system, which bases 50 percent of their evaluations on student performance. Eventually, teachers will be paid based on their evaluations.

All public schools, including charters, must comply with evaluation standards in the Student Success Act of 2011 (Senate Bill 736) starting next year. The new rules will go into effect this summer, giving districts time to make any necessary changes.

The evaluations were developed as a way to measure – attempting to filter outside factors – a teacher’s impact on student learning growth.

It begins by establishing expected growth for each student based on historical data and typical growth among students who share certain characteristics and earned similar test scores over the past two years.

The model accounts for various student characteristics like attendance, gifted status, and whether the student is disabled or an English language learner. It also accounts for characteristics of the classroom and the school.

Value-Added Results – The formula produces a value-added score for a teacher, which reflects the average amount of learning growth of the teacher’s students above or below the expected learning growth of similar students in the state, using the variables accounted for in the model.

  • A score of “0” indicates that students performed no better or worse than expected based on the factors in the model
  • A positive score indicates that students performed better than expected
  • A negative score indicates that students performed worse than expected

The model also yields information on the number and percent of students that met their statistical performance expectations.

Performance Standards in the draft rule:

  • Are established based on 2011-12 average growth by grade level and subject. The aggregate VAM score is converted to a proportion of a year’s growth that would become the criterion standard established in Rule until the performance standards are revised by the State Board.
  • Districts would apply the standards each year using confidence intervals.
  • Would be used beginning in 2013-14 to classify teacher and principal performance on the “Performance of Students” criteria.

The formula is working, according to a DOE analysis of the first year of statewide teacher evaluation data.

The DOE workshop presentations will explain the new state standards and the VAM, feature a question and answer session, and then invite public input.

Workshop schedule:

Monday, February 25, 4 p.m. — Broward College-Central Campus, Building 22, Room 136, 3501 S.W. Davie Road, Davie, FL 33314.

Monday, February 25, 4 p.m. CST, Gulf Coast State College, Gibson Lecture Hall, 5230 West U.S. Highway 98, Panama City, FL 32401.

Tuesday, February 264 p.m., Florida Gulf Coast University, Sugden Resort and Hospitality Management Building, Room 110, 10501 FGCU Blvd. South, Fort Myers, FL 33965.

Tuesday, February 26, 4 p.m., Florida State College at Jacksonville, Advanced Technology Center, Room T-140, 401 W. State St., Jacksonville, FL 32202.

Thursday, February 28, 4 p.m., Valencia College, 8600 Valencia College Lane, Criminal Justice Institute Building, Room 152, Orlando, FL 32825.


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