Educator Effectiveness Reports
Pittsburgh Public Schools Teachers Are Using Information and Supports to Help Students Succeed
Teachers across Pittsburgh Public Schools are among the first in the state to participate in district-wide support and development based on data from new, individualized Educator Effectiveness Reports.
The reports come four years after the District, in collaboration with the
Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers (PFT), set out to create a better method to provide teachers with feedback and help them improve their classroom practice.
The data in the reports gives teachers more information about their practice, as well as their impact on student learning and growth, than has been available previously.
Currently, teacher evaluations rely almost exclusively on principal observation. Under new state law Act 82, which will be put in place for the 2013-14 school year, evaluations must be based 50 percent on teacher observation and 50 percent on student outcomes. The PPS approach uses student feedback, student growth, and observation by a principal and in some cases a peer, as part of a holistic picture of educator effectiveness.
Ahead of the curve as a result of its Empowering Effective Teachers work, the District is providing its teachers a full year to reflect on their practice, as well as enhanced resources for professional development, before the law goes into effect.
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Along with the preview reports, teachers will receive suggested action steps tailored to their performance level, as well as access to more than 15 types of professional learning and support opportunities available in the District. These resources include professional development courses, workshops led by effective teachers, online videos aligned to evaluation components, feedback from principals and peers, opportunities to observe other teachers, focused year-long growth projects, curriculum training and more.
85 Percent of District Teachers Performing Proficient or Above
Under Act 82, teachers performance will be identified as either distinguished, proficient, needs improvement or failing each year. At PPS during the last school year, 85.4 percent of teachers performed at the proficient level or above. In fact:
- 15.3 percent of teachers demonstrated performance that earned them Distinguished ratings;
- 70.1 percent of teachers earned Proficient ratings;
- 5.3 percent of teachers earned Needs Improvement ratings; and
- 9.3 percent of teachers demonstrated performance that earned Failing ratings.
Designations were provided to teachers this year strictly for development purposes. All teachers, regardless of their level of performance, will receive recommendations for improvement and have access to the District’s professional learning and support opportunities.
Starting next year, teachers whose performance is Distinguished, Proficient and Needs Improvement will be classified as satisfactory, and those who performed at the Failing level will be classified as unsatisfactory. In accordance with state law, teachers who earn an unsatisfactory rating will be placed on a “performance improvement plan” to aid in improvement. Teachers with two consecutive years of unsatisfactory ratings will be subject to dismissal.