ESEA Flexibility Package by h3mOOk


									ESEA Flexibility Package

  Implications for State Teacher and Leader
             Evaluation Systems
Background and Overview

   Announcement on September 23, 2011

   Flexibility package provides the basis for a new state-federal
    partnership in which states:
        advance rigorous goals of teacher effectiveness and college and career-
         readiness for all students, and
        receive greater flexibility to determine how to best meet those goals
         through waivers from provisions of NCLB, including highly qualified
         teachers (HQT) and Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP)

   Largely aligned with most emerging systems.

   States planning to apply that have not yet begun work on new educator
    evaluation systems will have to work aggressively to meet timelines.
ESEA Flexibility Program Summary

To apply for this new flexibility, states must address four major
principles within specific timelines and describe how the state will fully
   College and career-ready standards and aligned assessments (Common Core or
    those aligned with state institutions of higher education)
   A rigorous state accountability system (based largely on principles articulated by
   A commitment to design, pilot, and implement a system of teacher and leader
    evaluation based significantly on student growth measures
   A commitment to evaluate and adjust state-level administrative and reporting
    requirements to reduce burden on districts and schools

States must meet all requirements in order to receive flexibility—they are not able to
request a limited waiver based on partial implementation of these requirements.
Focus on Effective Instruction and Leadership
Flexibility Package Requirements

Supporting Effective Instruction and Leadership through Educator
Evaluation Requirements:

1. Develop and adopt guidelines for teacher and principal evaluation and
   support systems

2. Ensure LEAs implement evaluation and support systems

Specific Requirements on Supporting Effective
Instruction and Leadership

States must develop teacher and leader evaluation & support systems that:
   Are used for continual improvement of instruction
   Meaningfully differentiate performance using at least three performance
   Use multiple valid measures including a significant factor of student
    growth for all students and include other measures of professional
    practice, such as observations, teacher portfolios, and student or parent
   Evaluate educators on a regular basis
   Provide clear, timely, and useful feedback to guide professional
   Provide growth data to reading/language arts and math teachers for
    grades in which there is a state assessment for current students and
    students taught in the previous year
   Inform personnel decisions                                                5
Specific Requirements on Supporting Effective
Instruction and Leadership

Additionally, states must explain their process for ensuring that each LEA
develops and implements teacher and leader evaluation systems consistent
with state guidelines.

Timeline for Implementation

States have a four-year period to adopt, develop, pilot, and fully implement
systems of educator evaluation consistent with the requirements. States
submitting in the first two application windows must:
   At Submission: Provide a plan to develop guidelines for evaluation and
    support systems, process for ensuring LEA implementation, and assurance
    that SEA has provided student growth data to teachers or will do so by the
    deadline required.
   SY 2011-12: SEA adopts guidelines for teacher and principal evaluation and
    support systems; SEA provides student growth data to teachers.
   SY 2012-13: LEAs develop evaluation and support systems consist with
    state guidelines
   SY 2013-14: LEAs pilot implementation of evaluation and support systems.
   SY 2014-15: LEAs fully implement evaluation and support systems.       7
 Analysis and Key Issues

 Timeline required for evaluation implementation: There is ambiguity on
  required timelines for states that apply under later application windows.
 Initial materials do not define the specificity of the "guidelines" that
  states must develop in 2011-12.

       Guidelines likely will be high-level requirements, similar to what was
        required for RTTT plans.
       Timelines likely would be pushed forward at all points for states
        applying for the following academic year.
       We will await further input and clarification in the forthcoming peer
        review guidance.

Analysis and Key Issues, continued

   Role of the SEA and LEA: The language regarding the Department’s
    intent for LEAs (rather than SEAs) could imply that LEAs develop systems
    of evaluation; however, early indications from the Department suggest
    that statewide models would meet these requirements.

        We will seek clarification as to whether a state using a statewide
         model is expected to develop its system as part of the guidelines in
         2011-12 or during 2012-13.

    Analysis and Key Issues, continued

    Required use of the evaluation: In addition to highlighting the importance
     of using evaluations to improve instruction and drive professional learning,
     the package requires states to ensure that LEAs use evaluations to "inform"
     employment decisions.
         This phrasing seems to indicate an openness for state for a for a range
          of approaches, from considering evaluations in combination with a
          variety of other factors to being a priority factor to driving decision-

    Analysis and Key Issues, continued

    Evaluation measure standards: All measures are required to be valid,
     which could be a high technical standard for states.
        Growth measures are required to be comparable, though this term is
         not defined.
        For non-tested grades and subjects, the Department provides a fairly
         comprehensive list of options, but, notably, does not include
         group/grade/ school-level measures, although such measures appear
         to meet the criteria outlined.

Analysis and Key Issues, continued

   Evaluation measure weighting: States are required to include student
    growth and measures of professional practice in their guidelines on
    evaluation design. Growth measures are required to be a "significant
    factor," but the Department leaves it up to the state to decide what
    "significant" means.

   Performance levels: Having at least three areas of performance
    specified is a clear indication the Department is acknowledging the
    importance of meaningful differentiation.

   Frequency: Requirements on the frequency of the evaluation are broad,
    using the term "regular basis," and do not prescribe any specific
    frequency (e.g. annual).

Analysis and Key Issues, continued

   Training: SEAs are required to ensure all teachers, principals, and
    evaluators receive training on the evaluation system and their
    responsibilities; however, the Department does not require that evaluators
    be certified to ensure their proficiency in implementing the evaluation with
    fidelity, which is broadly considered best practice.

   Reporting requirements: LEAs are required to report annually to the public
    and to the SEA the percentage of teachers and principals at each
    performance level at the State, LEA, and school levels, as well as the
    aggregate distribution by school poverty quartile. This requirement will
    likely necessitate new data sharing and reporting capabilities between the
    SEA and LEAs. School-level reporting of principal evaluation data as well as
    teacher evaluation data at small schools could also mean results of
    individual educator evaluations are publicly reported.

Waiver Submission Timeline and Process

The U.S. Department of Education has outlined a rolling process for states to
apply for waiver flexibility.
 For states to receive flexibility by the end of the 2011-12 school year, they
   must submit a flexibility request during one of the first two application
     First Application Deadline: November 14, 2011 with a December
       2011 peer review
     Second Application Deadline: mid-February 2012 with a spring 2012
       peer review
   States are also requested to notify the Department by October 12, 2011 of
    their intent to request flexibility and the application period in which they
    intend to apply.
   The Department will host Technical Assistance webinars in Sept.-Oct.
Waiver Submission Timeline and Process

The U.S. Department of Education has outlined a rolling process for states to apply
for waiver flexibility.
   There will be an additional opportunity to apply after the 2011-12 school
   States needing additional time can request to freeze their AMOs in
    exchange for taking preliminary steps towards meeting the required
   Waivers will be granted through the end of the 2013-14 school year with
    the option to request an extension.

Suggested Immediate Next Steps

States pursuing ESEA flexibility should assess their status against
Department requirements and weigh their need for relief against
readiness to act.
   Gap analysis: Where do state systems meet and not meet flexibility
    requirements? What needs to be done and by when?
   Authority: What must take place so that the state can develop and adopt
    guidelines? Are new regulations or guidance required? State legislation?
   Alignment: How does this work fit with other policy reforms currently
    being implemented? (Common Core, RTTT, etc.) How can the SEA ensure

Suggested Immediate Next Steps, continued

   Stakeholder engagement: Who needs to be involved? What existing
    systems and processes can be leveraged? What core messages need to
    be communicated?
   Capacity: What resources do the state and districts have to develop and
    implement systems of evaluation that meet Flexibility requirements?
    What policy decisions should be decided at the state versus district
   Expertise: Where internal expertise exists? What external support may
    be needed? What resources exist that can be leveraged?
   Systems: What processes and mechanisms need to be established to
    inform policies, build will, support implementation, etc.?


Groups of states are working collaboratively through EducationCounsel's
Teacher and Leader Evaluation Network and CCSSO's State Consortium for
Educator Effectiveness ( to share
resources and emerging best practice. Important resources from these and
other leading groups include:
   Teacher and Leader Evaluation Framework, jointly adopted by CCSSO, the
    National Governor's Association, and EducationCounsel
   Teacher Evaluation 2.0, from the New Teacher Project , proposes six
    design standards for rigorous and fair teacher evaluation systems -


   Evaluating Principals, from New Leaders for New Schools, provides ideas
    for the design and implementation of evaluation systems to increase
    principal effectiveness -
   More than Measurement: The TAP System’s Lessons Learned for
    Designing Better Teacher Evaluation Systems -
   Initial findings from the MET Project -


Janice Poda, Strategic Initiative Director,
Kathleen Paliokas, Program Director,
Robin Gelinas, Senior Policy Advisor,


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