Secondary technology coach Tim Childers, Bradley County Director of Schools Johnny McDaniel and Hopewell Principal Tim Riggs have accepted invitations to be a part of the Southeast Tennessee Field Service Office area discussion Monday in the Berry Auditorium at Chattanooga State Community College at 4:30 p.m.
Participation in the discussion was by invitation only. However, others may attend the event to listen to the discussion. Participants will be asked about the positive and negative elements they see in the TEAM model.
Governor Bill Haslam asked SCORE to hold discussions and gather data on educators response to the evaluation system implemented earlier this school year. SCORE will give its report to the department on June 1, according to the SCORE website.
Childers will be attending as a representative of the Bradley County chapter of Professional Educators of Tennessee.
“I want to represent the members of PET, but I (also) want to represent the views of all teachers,” Childers said.
The Danielson Framework, used in formulating the TEAM system, was meant to measure teacher improvement over a couple of years, not a couple of lessons, according to Childers.
“We’re really looking for the department of education to make some changes to the system,” Childers said.
Childers said the process has been time consuming. To him, simply changing the number of evaluations required within the system leaves many unresolved issues.
“Ultimately, I think the goal is to get as much through the department of education (so that legislators do not have to get involved),” Childers said.
Childers is not evaluated by the TEAM model, because he assists teachers with technology, not students.
McDaniel and Riggs said they would have liked to see the evaluation system phased in, possibility using the first year as a pilot.
“The way the legislation passed we had to implement ... as we were training and that’s always difficult,” McDaniel said.
“The good news is our teachers have really jumped in and really tried their best ... and they wanted to do a good job.”
In an effort to reach the highest tier of scoring, teachers across the system have spent several hours working on a single lesson plan to every aspect of the evaluation.
McDaniel said the emphasis the system puts on measuring teaching and learning is a positive thing.
“There are things about the TEAM model that I really like,” McDaniel said. “I just want to find a way to help our principals deal with it in a more efficient manner.”
Riggs, who was suggested for participation by the Tennessee Principals Association, said the implementation has a negative impact on administrators.
“I think our focus should be on helping those new teachers and those who may need some of that individualized attention; but because of the way they rolled this out, I don’t have that opportunity. I can’t devote as much time to those new teachers as I used to do,” Riggs said.
He said simply giving new teachers more evaluations does not give him the chance to give the quality of feedback he would like.
However, he said yearly evaluation are a good thing because “it gives us a good opportunity to tell teachers what they are doing well in their class.”
McDaniel said encouraging student discussion and comprehension was another positive element of the model.
Riggs said having the school TVAAS score effect the evaluation of teachers that do not have students who take the state tests was a negative element of the system.
At Hopewell, only seven teachers have students whose performance is used to determine the TVAAS score. All 33 of Hopewell’s teachers would have a portion of their evaluation score derived from this score.
Other evaluation systems are available for districts to use. These systems would be implemented at the district’s expense, whereas the TEAM model is funded through the state.