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Conference Proceeding

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Our hope is that policymakers, educators, and concerned citizens will focus on teacher evaluation (in the United States) as a way to ensure high quality teaching and to promote both professional development and reflective self assessment. We advocate for credible tools and appropriate preparation of evaluators conducting the assessment of teachers and school-based staff. Further, we argue for time - time allocation for school leaders to observe and evaluate in meaningful ways, followed by targeted, rich dialogue about practice and professional growth. District level policies will need to be developed and 17 implemented to ensure this exchange can occur right and well, and that resources are allocated accordingly. We continue to struggle with definitions of quality and ways to measure it. The U.S. Department of Education is making teacher appraisal a large part of its current reform agenda, as a way to improve the quality of teaching and learning. To effectively improve student achievement, appraisal needs to be carried out in the context of more comprehensive approaches to teacher recruitment, training, and development. While evaluation, including measures of student achievement and growth, is controversial, there is much to learn in this area through experimentation and innovation.


This paper was developed from participation in the 2011-2012 Presidential Seminar on the Catholic Intellectual Tradition.



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