A new research report published by the RAND Corporation, A Nationwide Look at Teacher Perceptions of Feedback and Evaluation Systems, highlights results of a national survey that explored teachers’ perceptions about the teacher evaluation systems in their schools and the feedback they receive.
What Did the Research Explore?
Analysis of the research highlights teachers’ perceptions about:
- The different types of feedback they’ve reported receiving.
- Whether the feedback they’ve received is helpful in improving their instructional practice.
- The data sources that informed their most recent evaluation.
- The fairness of evaluation systems.
- The resources teachers received to support their participation in these systems.
Key Finding and Recommendations About Teacher Evaluation Systems
The key findings indicate that teachers have higher perceptions about the impact of evaluation systems on improving their instructional practice when they understand the intention of the evaluation system, receive sufficient resources related to evaluation, and experience evaluations and feedback provided by peers or coaches.
- A large majority of teachers reported receiving regular feedback that was helpful for improving their instructional practice.
- The most commonly reported component of teacher evaluation systems was classroom observation ratings.
- The frequency of feedback and observations was positively associated with teachers’ perceptions that evaluation systems improved their practice.
- Teachers who were observed or given feedback by a peer, mentor, or coach had more-positive perceptions of teacher evaluation systems than those observed or given feedback by an administrator.
- Teachers who believed that evaluation systems were intended to promote teacher growth and development were more likely to rate those systems as fair.
- More than half of teachers indicated that they received sufficient resources related to formal instructional feedback and/or evaluation.
- Practitioners and policymakers looking to improve teachers’ perceptions of evaluation systems should consider providing teachers with multiple opportunities for classroom observation and feedback.
- Efforts to communicate clearly about the potential benefits of evaluation systems should be coordinated so that teachers receive consistent messages from central office staff, school leaders, and professional teacher organizations.
How Can an Online Evaluation Solution Help?
We are seeing a growing number of districts put a greater emphasis on more frequent and shorter “pop-in” three to six-minute observations/walkthroughs to provide on-going feedback to their teachers during the year. Besides principals and assistant principals, districts are also using coaches and/or peers to conduct classroom observations as part of the evaluation process to document what they saw, provide suggestions for improvement, and offer encouragement and praise as needed.
The TeachPoint Online Educator Evaluation Solution helps streamline the entire evaluation process so that administrators and evaluators can spend more time on coaching and feedback, conduct more frequent informal observations, and more easily facilitate this frequent feedback and teacher reflection.