State law on the weight of achievement measures in evaluations has changed for teachers in tested subjects.
The State Board of Education gave final approval to increase the weight of the “other achievement measures” from 15% to 25% and decrease the weight of observations from 50% to 40%. Affected educators will now see the quantitative portion of their evaluation count towards 60% of their LOE, up from 50%.
The weights for administrators, non-instructional staff, and teachers in untested subjects will remain unchanged.
While the change may seem innocuous, it is part of an ongoing push to continue to increase the use of standardized test results as a determinate of teaching quality. This concept is frequently pushed by those who advocate for privatizing public education through vouchers and privately-run charter schools.
“We know that test scores have never been a valid measure of teacher effect and that our kids are more than a score,” said TEA President Tanya Coats. “TEA wholly disagrees with the state’s continued push to increase its reliance on test data over other methods of evaluation like observations that are more meaningful in improving our practice as educators.”
The deadline for teachers to select which measure to use for that 25% is fast-approaching. These selections must be in TNCompass by December 2.
“Members need to make sure their selections are made in time and are encouraged to start the conversation with their evaluator soon,” Coats said. “When making these selections, it’s important to know that under state law, thanks to TEA’s advocacy, the teacher’s choice wins out if there’s disagreement about which measure to use.”
There are numerous options from which to choose for teachers selecting their achievement measure, including data from state or district tests as well as graduation rates or industry credentials. A full listing of options is available in the state’s “2022-23 Achievement Measure Worksheet.”