How do we fairly and consistently attach student growth and achievement data to educator evaluations?
Imagine a teacher coming to you at the beginning of the year with a simple request: Is my student growth goal for this year sufficient to receive the highest ranking on the growth portion if I meet my goals? According to the American Institute of Research (AIR), 60% of our states across the nation answer this question regarding student growth with non-tested content/grades by using a PROCESS to create Student Learning Objectives (or SLOs). Several of the 18 Race to the Top states require SLOs for all teachers (core and non-core).
NEW Michigan law (PA-173) for Educator Evaluations
Voice of Educators from Rhode Island on SLOs
PA-173 passed into law (November 5, 2015) stating evaluations for "teacher's or school administrator's job performance, using multiple rating categories that take into account data on student growth and assessment data. Student Growth must be measured using multiple measures that may include Student Learning Objectives, ... nationally normed or locally developed assessments that are aligned to state standards, researched based growth measures or alternative assessments that are rigorous and comparable across schools within the same school district, or PSA ..." See PA-173 One-Page Overview by MASSP and the other resources for Ed Eval on their website.
Student Learning Objectives or SLOs
Often the best way to learn about a new process and product is to view quality samples from Michigan:
- MS/HS Algebra 1 for Michigan using high quality, common formative assessments (aka interim)
- Sample SLO for 5th Grade Math PDF for Michigan using Delta Math
- SLO for MS Science for Michigan as a sample of what the future holds with MI Science Standards
- HS Visual Arts using MAEIA Assessment Modules.
- 8th Grade Social Studies (under development) using PASST Assessments (free online).
- Some of the BEST samples by content area are found in Rhode Island by content/grade level.
- MASSP example from Ohio "Mrs. Wilson MS Science" with blank templates from OH/AIR, additional samples compiled from MASSP sorted by content area SLOs.
- SLO Modules provided by Traverse Bay Area ISD (you may need to request access once you open the folder).
Maryland introduces SLOs by noting that establishing goals is nothing new, SLOs simply formalize the PROCESS! SLO is a specific, rigorous, measurable, long-term goal that:
SLO: S.M.A.R.T Goal, larger than an ILC, smaller than the SIP
Building SLOs is a progression ... perfection will not be obtained in a short amount of time.
Building Level School Improvement Goal (or SMART Objective) usually combines grade levels to write an objective that spans three to five years ... this one is too BIG.
Unit Goal (i.e. Instructional Learning Cycle (ILC)) usually focuses on a single classroom over the course of one unit of instruction which spans four to six weeks ... this one is too small.
Student Learning Objectives (SLOs) usually cover only the essential standards over the span of the course, regardless if the course is one full academic year or simply one semester or trimester ... this one is just right!
Three options to explore SLOs further. For more general information about the recommended process or begin to look at how to create an SLO. "Writing a SLO" will use a template and checklist from MDE whereas "Growth Plans" are an abbreviated SLO that combines a "Professional Growth Plan" portion as well.