New Teacher Evaluation Program Adds to Administrator Duties

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CENTRALIA - The new teacher evaluation program being piloted by some Missouri schools will increase the workload for administrators.

The new evaluation features parts which focus on administrators responsible for evaluating teachers. The new program sets broad criteria to make sure the Administrators will be held accountable, and are properly equipped to evaluate their teachers. This is the first time attention has been shown towards the evaluator. Todd Fuller of the Missouri State Teachers Association said the role of the administrator had been a concern amongst teachers.

"There's a lot of emphasis on what a principal needs to do in terms of being in the classroom of a teacher and that's important, and we recognize that that's important."

Along with administrator attention, the State Board of Education approved new guidelines put in place to better evaluate teachers. Guidelines and standards address curriculum expectations, technology use in the classroom, instruction in the fine arts and physical education, professional development for staff, college and career planning, and assessments and data use to determine student progress.

Centralia Superintendent Darin Ford said administrators strive to do all they can when visiting classrooms and that visits continue to hold high priority. Ford  added that mandates and continued funding cuts lead to more responsibility to administrators. 

"The issue is, many times school districts don't have enough help, they don't have enough administration to help manage those day-to-day tasks so it becomes almost impossible to do both."

Last year Missouri ranked 49th in state education funding, and 46th in average teacher salaries.

Each school district is able to modify its evaluation systems as long as they adhere to the guidelines set by the state. The new systems need in place for the 2014-2015 school year.