Carving a Place for Blended Learning in the Era of Teacher Evaluation


This article from Getting Smart  has some good points about instructor evaluation (I like the term feedback better)  in blended learning environments and how it might be done effectively.  

I particularly like the first one, which makes assessment contextual –  so realistic but how often is that a part of any assessment evaluation?  If there is going to be evaluation, it matters.

-Observation tools should be able to be tailored to the blended learning model, so that teachers can receive formative feedback that is specific to the environment where they teach. The phrase “Uses Technology” with a checkbox next to it is not going to provide guidance that helps a teacher improve their practice around instructional software. We need teacher observation rubrics designed for different blended models that are recognized as valid and that can be used to supplement the observation tools already adopted by districts and states.

-Evaluation systems should recognize the different educator roles created by blended learning. Whether the teacher is working remotely in a virtual school or leading intervention with rotating groups of students across grade levels, we need evaluation systems that accurately capture the educator’s impact on student growth and achievement. This is especially the case for evaluation systems that rely heavily upon value-added scores for determining teacher effectiveness.

-Evaluation systems should help us to gauge the quality of the software we implement. The tools for measuring teacher-value added are improving and should continue to improve with the switch to Common Core assessments. If we can use the new wealth of data to judge software value-added using the same scale teacher value-added, we will have taken a major step towards proving the value of blended learning to the larger education community.