A new evalution method would judge LAUSD teachers based on a variety of factors, including both test scores, classroom observations and parent feedback, according to the Los Angeles Times.
The 15-member group, "Our Schools, Our Voice," has proposed a method that would base 25 percent of a teacher's evaluation on standarized test scores, 60 percent on classroom observation and the rest on student and teacher feedback.
The evaluation method would be introduced over a period of two years, and would only count students' test scores if they attend a teacher's class for more than 85 percent of the class year. Additionally, during the first two years, teachers could opt to have the school's overall scores used in their evaluation if they were higher than their own classroom scores.
The LASUD and United Teachers Los Angeles, the union that represents teachers, have been locked in a contentious battle over the use of standardized test scores in teachers' evaluations.
In April, the District for the first time ever unveiled its own value-added scores, which ranked the ability of schools to help students of all demographics raise their test scores over time. Shortly thereafter, the District began releasing to teachers their own confidential value-added scores.
The district has been adamant about the importance of evaluating teachers based on test scores, citing the drastic need to improve student performance.
Teachers, however, have argued that standardized tests are too volatile a metric to be used evaluate student performance. Issues of poverty, parent involvement, language spoken at home—or even the student's health on the day of the exam can all impact how a student performs, effectively blurring the picture of how a teacher is performing.
Earlier this year, UTLA proposed its own self-evaluation method, which would allow but not require teachers to include student test scores.
Patch Asks: What is the best way to evaluate teachers? Should test scores be a part of the formula, or the whole formula? If not, what should administrators look at to determine how well teachers are doing their job?