There is a lot of talk about teacher evaluations. The public likes to criticize teachers and claim they are getting overpaid and being underworked. One of the things popping up in the talk surrounding new teacher evaluation systems is outside observers coming in to do the evaluations on teachers, up to 4 times a year. I feel that this method might work for evaluators to give an impartial judgment of the teachers. However, does this method really offer the best evaluation of a teacher? Will an outside observer be able to note that I come in early every day to prepare my classroom and my lessons while other teachers barely make it in the door by the time the first bell rings? Will these evaluators be able to observe my commitment to working with students outside of the normal school hours in student council and after-school tutoring? Will these evaluators see the relationships that are formed with students and the care and compassion that are shown to them throughout the day? How about an evaluator to follow me home at night and on the weekends to see how many hours I put in writing lesson plans and grading student work?
Granted, promptness to school, involvement in extracurriculars, caring for students, etc. are not necessarily what makes someone a good teacher. I can still teach the content during the school day and receive a high evaluation on my teaching of that content. But I want to be a GREAT teacher. And to me that means putting in 110% for my kids. I care for my students and treat them with respect and dignity AND teach the content. Evaluate that.
Thoughts? Leave me a comment.