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In about what the administration is looking for

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               In the Article “Evaluations That Help Teaches Learn,” Danielson
provides evidence that the current way of evaluating teachers is flawed.  The evaluations that take place in most of
the educational systems today are not effective in assessing the abilities of
teachers. Teachers are not getting meaningful feedback. Danielson describes the
flaws of current evaluation systems.  In
this article, Danielson is trying to accomplish two things. She is trying to
improve the current system of the teacher evaluation and a new, more effective
way can be implemented.  This article is
very important to the decision making for school leaders.  Danielson urges school administration to try
something new and more effective.  Schools
need an evaluation system that can more accurately assess teachers’ ability to
teach.  Danielson states that the
traditional system is outdated, simplistic, not individualized for novice and
veteran teachers, has a lack of consistency among evaluators, and one-way top
down communication.  She details the
reasons why we evaluate teachers. These reasons are to ensure teacher quality,
provide a consistent definition of good teaching, provide a shared
understanding, create skilled evaluators, and promote professional
development.  Danielson then instructs
the reader on how to implement to system and references it’s success in
Chicago.  The last thing that Danielson
discusses is the four challenges facing the implementation of the new
system.  These challenges are that
participants must familiarize themselves with the structure of the frameworks,
they must learn how to recognize the sources of evidence for each component and
element, learning how to interpret the rubrics, and finally how to calibrate
their judgments against those of their colleagues. 

            In this article, Danielson mentions
several reasons for improving the teacher evaluation system.  She identifies the current problems that are
facing the system.  Danielson mentions
that it is important that we change the system to fit the needs of our faculty
and find a way to help them become involved in the evaluation process.  Right now the system is not specific enough
to provide adequate, specific, and beneficial feedback to the teacher.  Another point that is made is that everyone
must agree on what “good teaching” is. 
The Framework for Teaching rubric provides specific feedback on what the
teacher needs to improve one. It is not like the old system where there were
only three choices for the administration to choose from.  It goes into much more detail about what the
administration is looking for from their evaluations and what the teacher needs
to do to achieve a higher level of teaching. 
The limits of this form of evaluation are that the evaluator needs to
observe several times a year in order to gain a complete performance evaluation
and the author says that a “Challenge for administrators is Finding time to
conduct meaningful observations and engage in professional conversations about
practice.”  One other weakness is the requirement
that all evaluator must be trained appropriately.  “A credible system of teacher evaluation requires
higher levels of proficiency of evaluators than the old checklist, “drive-by”
observation models.

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            The traditional systems of teacher
evaluations, techniques included checklists, simple comments regarding
performance with no guidance, no differentiation of forms from novice teachers
to veteran teachers, lack of consistency between evaluators, and top-down
communication.  These procedures have a
place but not for the overall performance evaluations of teachers.  An effective leader should mentor their
teachers with both positive and negative feedback.  The administration should want their staff to
be as good as it can be.  That is why
credibility in evaluation is the key. 
For one thing the principal is the one who recommends teachers for
rehire and your name is on the line.  If
you keep approving inadequate teachers for rehire then what does that say about
you?  A good evaluation system should
revolve around teacher/student interaction, depth of discussion, student
involvement, and quality of the lesson. 
All of the evaluation tools can then be shared with and discussed with
the teacher to formulate a meaningful interaction that promotes growth and
satisfaction of a job well done.  The
only way to grow, as a professional, is to know your weaknesses and find
meaningful ways to strengthen them. It is important that the teachers continue
to be students as well and always doing activities to improve their craft.   That
is where leadership comes in.  Effective
leaders should guide their teachers by sharing input and providing
opportunities for growth.

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