Beyond Satisfactory

A New Teacher Evaluation System for New York
January 2011

Prior to 2010, the simplistic teacher evaluation system in New York CIty did a disservice to us as professionals, since we did not have the supports to develop in the absence of meaningful feedback, and to our students, who deserve the best teachers possible. Within this limited rating system, great teachers went unrecognized, ineffective teachers were largely ignored, and everyone else was left without specific information about how to improve. In 2010, New York passed a law to overhaul the teacher evaluation system before 2013 and this paper outlines our recommendations for implementation.

We recommend that New York adopt a teacher evaluation system with the following breakdowns:

  • 25% for student value-added growth data

  • 15% for other locally selected measures of student achievement

  • 30% for administrator observations

  • 15% for independent outside observations

  • 10% for student surveys

  • 5% for support of the school community

  • With up to 5% demerits for lack of professionalism and/or poor attendance

Proposed evaluation system

About the Teacher Action Team

We are a team of 14 current and former teachers who met for five months to research pilot programs, successful district models and state laws across the country to determine what should and should not be included in a great teacher evaluation system. We looked at a variety of approaches and discussed how these policies would translate into practice in our own classrooms.

Josh Adland
Middle School Teacher in Harlem
David Braslow
High School Math Teacher in Harlem
Ruben Brosbe
3rd-grade Teacher in the Bronx
Jessica Callahan
1st-grade Teacher in Brooklyn
Victoria Furstenau
6th-grade Humanities Teacher in Brooklyn
Barbara Gsovski
Remediation Specialist in Harlem
Michael Loeb
Middle School Math, ELA, and Social Studies Teacher to Students With Special Needs in the Bronx
Jonathan Shaw
6th-grade Teacher in the Bronx
Grace Snodgrass
6th-8th grade ELA Teacher in the Bronx
Abby Terrell
6th-grade Special Education Teacher in Manhattan
Sarah Tierney
5th-grade ELA and Social Studies Teacher in the Bronx
Blake Unger Dvorchik
7th-grade Mathematics Teacher and Data Specialist in the Bronx
Craig Wallace
High School Mathematics Teacher in Washington, D.C.
Iyesha Williams
High School Science Teacher in the Bronx