Teacher evaluation reform bills in Michigan would de-emphasize student test scores, according to Chalkbeat Detroit.
Current state law requires that student scores on standardized tests count for 40 percent of a teacher’s performance rating. Under two bills that passed the Senate, that requirement would go away, and districts would be able to use their own criteria for evaluating teachers, such as classroom observations, samples of student work, rubrics, and lesson plans.
The bills would also de-emphasize evaluations as a factor in districts’ decisions to fire or demote teachers or deny them tenure. They would require districts to take action against teachers who don’t improve after repeated interventions.
The House Education Committee is expected to take up the bills next.
By 2019, nine states had stopped requiring that test scores be considered in teacher evaluations. Many other states have considered making the same change.
School districts in Michigan would have to start using teacher and administrator rating systems by July 1, 2024, that include four possible ratings: “highly effective,” “effective,” “minimally effective,” and “ineffective.” After that, districts would have to add “developing” and “needing support” ratings as well.
Teachers rated “needing support” would get individualized development plans from their districts to improve their performance within 180 days.
Districts would not be allowed to fire, deny tenure to, or withhold full certification from teachers rated “ineffective.” But they would be required to terminate teachers or administrators who are rated “needing support” three years in a row. Those who receive that rating could request reviews of their evaluations.