In light of ongoing legal and interpretive issues surrounding teachers’ VAM scores for the 2011-2012 school year, USEP and the District agreed to put final evaluations for last year on hold while the parties researched the issues and reviewed the VAM data and its effects. After much deliberation, discussion and review, the parties agreed to finalize and issue summative evaluations in order to meet the state-mandated deadline of November 9, 2012.
The negotiated language which was ratified late last year, provided for the District and Union to review the data and make revisions as needed. That language helped us avoid much of the controversies surrounding VAM scores that other districts experienced.
Upon review of the VAM scores as applied to our negotiated point system and values, the parties incorporated the scores into the summative evaluations for teachers for the 2011-2012 school year. Principals will provide teachers with their VAM scores upon receipt of their evaluation.
Further, the District and Union reviewed individual teacher’s evaluations whose VAM scores when added to the Core Effective score, resulted in reducing their summative evaluation score. In those few instances, the review resulted in no reduction to the teacher’s overall evaluation from the core practices score. This was a huge issue in other districts, and the USEP bargaining team deserves praise for taking their time last year and insisting on realistic cut scores.
Please remember, the teacher evaluation memorandum of understanding was for the 2011-2012 school year only. Both the District and USEP are awaiting the resolution of the legal, procedural and rule-making processes when incorporating student scores for the 2012-2013 school year.
In addition, the negotiation teams are continuing to seek to streamline and improve the process for this current year. No matter what; let’s not lose sight that the entire evaluation system is the result of a short-sighted legislature and Governor who passed SB-736 without even fully understanding or caring about the implications and impacts.