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Teacher and principal standards for educator effectiveness updated data conference 2011

Teacher and Principal Standards for Educator EffectivenessUpdated Data Conference 2011

April 18-19, 2011

Educator effectiveness reforms

State policymakers across the nation are embracing comprehensive educator effectiveness reforms based on teacher and principal performance standards as the key to improving student achievement. Nebraska is involved in this process as well.

Educator Effectiveness Reforms


Teacher and principal standards for educator effectiveness updated data conference 2011

What Does the Research Show

“The quality of an education system cannot

exceed the quality of its teachers.”

--Michael Barber and Mona Mourshed, How the World’s

Best Performing School Systems Come Out on Top (2007)

Nebraska s educators

Approximately 24,980 teachers and 1,164 principals and assistant principals, as well as more than 4,500 educational specialists of various kinds, served about 336,500 elementary and secondary students in 491 public and non-public school systems in Nebraska in 2010-11.

Nebraska’s Educators

Why educator effectiveness

  • Teachers and Principals make the greatest difference in student achievement.

Why Educator Effectiveness?

Robert Marzano (2005):Nearly 60 percent of a school’s impact on achievement is attributable to principal and teacher effectiveness.

Why educator effectiveness1

  • School reforms won’t work unless educator effectiveness is improved.

Why Educator Effectiveness?

Mariana Haynes (2010):“It has become clear that heavy investments in state reforms will not yield the level of buy-in, ownership, and results needed at the school level unless policy leaders address the capacity of teachers and leaders to implement instructional improvements.”

Why educator effectiveness2

Why Educator Effectiveness?

  • State policies on educator effectiveness are often designed piecemeal, in separate “silos”, each with its own constituency.

Managing Educator Talent (2010):“….significant and sustained improvements in teacher and principal effectiveness will be achieved only if all key policies across the educator career continuum are addressed in a cohesive, aligned and strategic manner.”

Why educator effectiveness3

Why Educator Effectiveness?

  • State policies often focus on preparation and certification and do not address the entire educator career continuum.

  • State policies may reflect a lack of coordination across different levels of governance.

The Wallace Foundation (2006):“Absent…cohesion in policies and practices – both within and between different levels public education – victories won by leaders in improving teaching and learning are likely to be smaller, more isolated, and short-lived than they could be.”

Why educator effectiveness4

  • Federal programs, such as Race to the Top, have put a strong emphasis on teacher and principal effectiveness.

Why Educator Effectiveness?

Nebraska’s Race to the Top application called for the development of state teacher/principal standards, statewide induction, mentoring, and evaluation, continuous professional development, and performance-defined certificate renewal.

Why educator effectiveness5

  • National organizations, such as the Council of Chief State School Officers, are urging comprehensive approaches to personnel development.

Why Educator Effectiveness?

Taking Human Capital Seriously (2009): “The time has come to address these ‘people’ issues; unless there are talented teachers in every classroom and talented principals in every building, policy reform will not be realized. Delay is not acceptable.”

Educator effectiveness initiative

In November, Nebraska Department of Education staff asked the State Board for a policy statement supporting an Educator Effectiveness Initiative and for permission to proceed with the development of Teacher and Principal performance standards as a first step.

Aims and elements of an Educator Effectiveness Initiative were outlined:

Educator Effectiveness Initiative

Aims of an educator effectiveness initiative

(1) Develop educator effectiveness policies that are cohesive, aligned and strategic.

(2) Focus on effective school leaders as well as teachers.

(3) Provide horizontal alignment across educators’ full careers.

(4) Create vertical alignment across levels of governance – school, districts, state.

Aims of an Educator Effectiveness Initiative

Aims of an educator effectiveness initiative1

(5) Manage educator talent systematically as a way to enhance student learning and upgrade the education profession.

Aims of an Educator Effectiveness Initiative

Taking Human Capital Seriously (2009):“States should launch policies and strategies to recruit, develop, reward and retain top teacher and principal talent. The goal – to improve student learning through improved instruction and effective teaching – will not only benefit students but it will also help teachers and principals as well, giving them the professionalism and respect they deserve as shepherds of our nation’s most precious resource, our children.”

Educator effectiveness policies

Statewide Educator Standards

Educator Effectiveness Policies

  • Teacher/Principal performance standards.

  • Tied to national standards for teachers and principals.

  • Form the basis for other effectiveness policies.

    Example: InTASC and ISLLC national standards.

Educator effectiveness policies1

  • Standards-based accountability for preparation programs.

  • Standards-based performance assessments for new teacher and principals.

  • Traditional/alternative certification tied to standards.

    Example: California’s Teacher Performance Assessment.

Educator Effectiveness Policies

Preparation and Licensure

Educator effectiveness policies2

  • Coordination of state and district efforts.

  • Mentoring based on teacher/principal standards.

  • Full certification tied to successful induction.

    Example: Connecticut’s BEST Program.

Educator Effectiveness Policies

Induction and Mentoring

Educator effectiveness policies3

  • Standards-based teacher/principal evaluation.

  • State mandated system or state guidance for local systems.

  • Linkage to student achievement as well as standards of practice.

  • Tied to professional development activities.

    Example: Iowa’s standards-based evaluation.

Educator Effectiveness Policies

Teacher/Principal Evaluation

Educator effectiveness policies4

  • Alignment to state performance standards/improvement goals.

  • Linkage to local school improvement plans.

  • Tied to teacher/principal evaluation.

  • Linked to recertification.

    Example: Wisconsin’s Individual Development Plans.

Educator Effectiveness Policies

Professional Development

Educator effectiveness policies5

  • Alternative compensation models. (Nebraska’s LB 1114)

  • Linkage to performance management (evaluation)?

  • Incentives for shortage areas/hard-to-staff schools.

    Example: Minnesota’s Q-Comp program.

Educator Effectiveness Policies

Compensation and Incentives

Educator effectiveness policies6

  • School climate and physical environment issues.

  • Equity in technology and resources.

  • Statewide student behavior/discipline policies.

  • Working conditions tied to recruitment/retention.

    Example: Ohio’s Teaching/Learning Conditions Survey.

Educator Effectiveness Policies

Working Conditions

The process

The Process

Leadership needs of an educator effectiveness system

  • High level leadership is critical.

  • State policymakers must take the lead.

  • Need a unified vision and a strategic plan.

  • Broad stakeholder engagement is crucial.

Leadership needs of an Educator Effectiveness System

  • Managing Educator Talent (2010):“Education reform cannot be sustained in the long-term without galvanizing the momentum and political will needed for success from a broad range of stakeholder and constituency groups. ”

November state board response

November State Board Response

Is this something the state should be doing?

What are the benefits?

What are the costs?

Get the views of education stakeholder groups throughout the state.

What do Stakeholders Think?


Listening to stakeholders

December 10, 2010, Stakeholder meeting involved 26 participants representing 10 educational organizations as well as NDE staff and guests. Two small group discussion sessions were held – one on educator effectiveness initiatives and one on performance standards – followed by large group discussions.

Listening to Stakeholders

Stakeholder meeting purposes

  • Gauge support for a comprehensive Educator Effectiveness Initiative.

  • Identify stakeholder concerns and provide guidance to State Board/NDE on effectiveness policies.

  • Define purposes and structure for Nebraska teacher/principal performance standards.

  • Recommend next steps to State Board/NDE.

Stakeholder Meeting Purposes

Is an educator effectiveness initiative needed in nebraska

Strong consensus that an Educator Effectiveness Initiative is needed in Nebraska. Discussion themes included:

  • Comprehensiveness is important.

  • Provides for commonality and consistency.

  • Provides expectations for teachers/administrators.

  • Provides for growth and alignment across careers.

  • It is purposeful.

  • Reflects public demands for a focus on educator effectiveness.

  • A system is needed that is both centralized and customized and that provides for local flexibility.

Is an Educator Effectiveness Initiative needed in Nebraska?

What are some of the concerns limitations

Themes from discussion included:

  • Cost in money, time, and human resources.

  • Maintaining a tight/loose configuration. Need to be tight on standards but loose on the ways for districts to meet those standards.

  • Confidentiality and the risk of misuse of data.

  • Maintaining an ongoing discussion with stakeholders as changes are implemented.

  • Keeping diversity in mind.

What are some of the concerns/limitations?

Recommendations to nde state board regarding an educator effectiveness initiative

  • Approach from standpoint of making a good system better rather than fixing a broken system.

  • Recognize that stakeholder groups in Nebraska are willing to collaborate and contribute.

  • Learn from experiences of other states/organizations.

  • Design policies for improving teaching and learning, not just comparing schools.

  • Approach this as a value-added opportunity.

  • Focus on development not regulation.

  • Recognize the end objective is improved student achievement.

Recommendations to NDE/State Board regarding an Educator Effectiveness Initiative

Recommendations to nde state board for next steps regarding performance standards

Broad consensus to create a Standards Drafting Committee.

Other recommendations included:

  • Allow appropriate time to determine what will best serve the state.

  • Support the process that NDE is currently using for the development of standards.

  • The Board needs to understand how fortunate we are to have a group of stakeholders that can accomplish these things. This is not what we will find in other states.

Recommendations to NDE/State Board for next steps regarding performance standards.

Standards drafting participation






Omaha Public Schools

Non-public Schools

Professional Practices Commission

Higher Education/NCTE

Nebraska Association of Personnel Administrators

Parents – PTA

Standards Drafting Participation

Standards drafting process

  • Standards Drafting Committee created with 41 educators, Board members, and parents representing 13 stakeholder groups as well as NDE. Met Feb. 15-16 to begin task.

  • Divided into Teacher/Principal Drafting Teams.

  • 12-person Editing Committee met Feb. 28.

  • Drafting Committee and Editing Committee met again on March 15-16 and Editing Committee held a final meeting on April 12.

Standards Drafting Process

Standards drafting process1

  • Drafting Committee reviewed national standards from several organizations as well as standards from numerous states.

  • First meetings reached consensus on purposes, targets, and structure of standards as well as identifying standards topics.

  • Second meetings resulted in six draft standards for teachers and nine for Principals.

  • Further revisions by Editing Committee after Stakeholder and State Board reviews.

Standards Drafting Process

Purposes of standards

Drafting Committee Consensus:

“The primary purpose of the Nebraska Teacher and Principal standards is to define effective practice in order to improve teaching and learning.”

Purposes of Standards

Purposes of standards1

State Board Accountability Committee :

  • Members emphasized Standards as a resource for local districts and higher education institutions – a guiding framework describing effective practice for teachers and principals – not a regulatory mandate.

  • Standards only useful if they lead to improved student performance.

Purposes of Standards

Target group for standards

Teachers and Principals: Can be defined as…

Educators whose primary task is working directly with students in a school setting.

Consensus that standards for specialists who do not fit the definition above could be developed by local districts.

Target Group for Standards

Audiences for standards

  • Professional audience: Teachers, Principals, Stakeholder Groups, and Other Professionals

  • Policymaker audience: State Board of Education, Legislators, Governor, Local Boards.

  • Public audience: General Public, Media, etc.

Audiences for Standards

Writing for diverse audiences

Important for Standards Statements to be:

  • Clear and concise

  • Reasonably specific

  • Free of educational jargon

  • Able to be understood by all audiences whether with or without detailed indicators

Writing for diverse audiences

Structure of standards

Drafting Committee consensus on structure:

  • Standard Statements – Broad statements of effective practice.

  • Indicator Statements – Examples that clarify Standards. Not an exhaustive list; districts can add local Indicators.

  • Introductory Statement – Preface to the document.

Structure of Standards

Standards format

Standard Topic: Instructional Strategies.

Standard Statement: “The Teacher intentionally uses a variety of effective instructional strategies to ensure growth in student achievement. “

Example Indicators: “ The Teacher…

  • Uses a range of developmentally and culturally appropriate instructional strategies and resources that are targeted to meet learning goals.

  • Modifies, adapts, and differentiates instruction and accommodations based on data analysis, observation, and student needs.

Standards Format

Teacher standards topics

  • Foundational Knowledge

  • Planning and Preparation

  • The Learning Environment

  • Instructional Strategies

  • Assessment

  • Professionalism

  • Vision and Collaboration

Teacher Standards Topics

Principal standards topics

  • Vision for Learning

  • Continuous School Improvement

  • Instructional Leadership

  • Culture for Learning

  • Systems Management

  • Staff Leadership

  • Developing Relationships

  • Professional Ethics and Advocacy

Principal Standards Topics

Recurring themes throughout standards

  • Teacher and Principal Accountability for Student Learning.

  • Cultural Competence

  • Use of Technology

Recurring Themes Throughout Standards

Standards review process

March 29—Stakeholder Committee reviewed draft standards.

April 4 and April 11—State Board Accountability Subcommittee reviewed draft and discussed purposes.

April 12—Editing Committee refined draft standards.

May 4-5—Final State Board review and adoption of public comment version of Standards.

Standards Review Process

Next steps

May-September, 2011: Public/professional input on standards. Plans include:

  • Administrator Days in August

  • Focus group meetings for teachers

  • Public forums throughout Nebraska

  • Public/professional comment via survey on NDE website.

    September, 2011: Final revisions made to drafts.

    October, 2011: State Board considers final drafts for approval.

Next Steps

Public comment survey

From July 1 to September 2, a public comment survey will be available at:


Survey includes opportunity to comment on each standard.

Public Comment Survey

As you review the standards things to think about

Do the Standards reflect the skills and knowledge necessary to be an effective Teacher or Principal in the 21st century?

Are the Standards clear and understandable?

Are topics like technology, accountability and diversity reflected throughout the Standards?

How can the Standards be useful to your local school district?

What revisions to the Standards should be considered?

As You Review the Standards: Things to Think About

Teacher standard 1 foundational knowledge

“The Teacher demonstrates a comprehensive knowledge of content, pedagogy, students, and standards needed to provide all students with effective opportunities for learning, development, and achievement.”

Teacher Standard 1: Foundational Knowledge

  • Example Indicators:

  • Possesses a strong command of the content and related instructional strategies in the discipline(s) he or she teaches.

  • Understands multiple research-based instructional approaches, strategies, assessments and interventions.

  • Understands cultural and societal influences and their impact on teaching and learning.

Teacher standard 2 planning and preparation

“The Teacher integrates knowledge of content, pedagogy, students, and standards with established curriculum to develop rigorous and meaningful instruction for all students that supports the growth of student learning, development and achievement. ”

Teacher Standard 2: Planning and Preparation

  • Example Indicators:

  • Designs and adapts lessons based on student progress, assessment results, and interests.

  • Develops instruction that is effective in light of cultural and social influences.

  • Integrates a variety of resources, including technology, to provide challenging, motivating, and engaging learning experiences.

Teacher standard 3 the learning environment

“The develops and maintains a learning environment that promotes active students engagement in learning, development and achievement. ”

Teacher Standard 3: The Learning Environment

  • Example Indicators:

  • Ensures a safe and accessible environment.

  • Creates a positive learning climate of openness, mutual respect, support, and inquiry, and interacts with students in ways that demonstrate and promote respect for diversity.

  • Establishes high expectations that cultivate learners’ self-motivation and encourage pride in their genuine accomplishments.

Teacher standard 4 instructional strategies

“The Teacher intentionally uses a variety of effective instructional strategies to ensure growth in student achievement. ”

Teacher Standard 4: Instructional Strategies

  • Example Indicators:

  • Uses a range of developmentally and culturally appropriate instructional strategies and resources that are targeted to meet learning goals.

  • Modifies, adapts, and differentiates instruction and accommodations based on data analysis, observation, and student needs.

  • Uses strategies that enable students to develop skills in critical thinking, creativity, and problem-solving.

Teacher standard 5 assessment

“The Teacher systematically uses multiple methods of assessment to measure student progress and to inform ongoing planning, instruction, and reporting. ”

Teacher Standard 5: Assessment

  • Example Indicators:

  • Uses both formative and summative assessments and the resulting data to inform instruction, monitor student progress over time, and provide meaningful feedback to each student.

  • Ensures that assessment instruments and procedures are valid and address the cultural, societal, and linguistic diversity of students.

  • Uses strategies that enable students to assess, monitor, and reflect on their own work.

Teacher standard 6 professionalism

“The Teacher acts as an ethical and responsible member of the professional community. ”

Teacher Standard 6: Professionalism

  • Example Indicators:

  • Uses a variety of self-assessment strategies to reflect upon professional practice.

  • Adheres to school policies, procedures, and regulations.

  • Models ethical behavior in accordance with established standards.

Teacher standard 7 vision and collaboration

“The Teacher contributes to and promotes the vision of the school and collaborates with students, families, colleagues, and the larger community to share responsibility for the growth of student learning, development and achievement. ”

Teacher Standard 7: Vision and Collaboration

  • Example Indicators:

  • Actively participates in the development and implementation of the school’s vision, mission, and goals for teaching and learning.

  • Contributes to the continuous school improvement process.

  • Establishes and maintains collaborative professional relationships.

Principal standard 1 vision for learning

“The Principal establishes and communicates a vision for teaching and learning that results in improved student performance.”

Principal Standard 1: Vision for Learning

  • Example Indicators:

  • Uses varied sources of information and analyzes data about current practices and outcomes to shape the vision, mission, and goals of the school.

  • Engages constituent groups within the school community to develop commitment to the vision, mission, and goals of the school.

  • Communicates the vision in order to establish high expectations for student performance.

Principal standard 2 continuous school improvement

“The Principal leads a continuous school improvement process that results in improved student performance and school effectiveness.”

Principal Standard 2: Continuous School Improvement

  • Example Indicators:

  • Develops and implements, in collaboration with the school community, a strategic schools improvement plan that is aligned with district, state, and federal guidelines and goals.

  • Makes informed decisions based on student achievement data, research, and best practices to improve teaching and learning.

  • Uses the continuous improvement plan to guide professional development within the school community.

Principal standard 3 instructional leadership

“The Principal provides leadership to ensure the implementation of a rigorous curriculum, the use of effective teaching practices, and accountability for results. ”

Principal Standard 3: Instructional Leadership

  • Example Indicators:

  • Promotes teaching practices based on sound pedagogy, professional collaboration, and instructional interventions designed to meet the learning needs of all students.

  • Supports instructional content that reflects the perspectives of a diverse society.

  • Assumes responsibility for the continued improvement of student learning within the school and holds staff accountable for the growth of student achievement within their assigned areas.

Principal standard 4 culture for learning

“The Principal creates a school culture that enhances the academic, social, physical, and emotional development of all students.”

Principal Standard 4: Culture for Learning

  • Example Indicators:

  • Provides full and equitable access to educational programs, curricular, and extra-curricular opportunities that address the needs, interests, and abilities of all students.

  • Fosters an environment of respect and rapport based on clear guidelines for appropriate behavior.

  • Uses multiple indicators of students success to encourage the development of the whole child in a manner consistent with academic achievement.

Principal standard 5 systems management

“The Principal manages the organization, operations, and resources of the school to provide a safe, efficient, and effective learning environment for all students and staff.”

Principal Standard 5: Systems Management

  • Example Indicators:

  • Allocates financial, material, and human resources to support the educational program.

  • Monitors the school’s site, facilities, services, and equipment to provide a safe and orderly environment.

  • Identifies and resolves problems, manages conflict, and builds consensus to achieve the efficient operation of the school.

Principal standard 6 staff leadership

“The Principal uses effective practices to select, develop, support, and lead high quality teachers and other staff.”

Principal Standard 6: Staff Leadership

  • Example Indicators:

  • Recruits, hires, develops, and retains high quality professional and support staff to realize the school’s vision.

  • Supervises the school’s staff members and holds them accountable for results based on high expectations and professional standards.

  • Implements a performance evaluation system and a professional development program for teachers and instructional support staff based on a common instructional language and effective teaching practices.

Principal standard 7 developing relationships

“The Principal promotes and supports productive relationships with students, staff, families, and the community.”

Principal Standard 7: Developing Relationships

  • Example Indicators:

  • Builds professional relationships that support the school and its vision.

  • Uses the community’s diverse cultural, social, and intellectual resources to strengthen the school community.

  • Encourages active family and community participation in the learning process in order to enhance student achievement.

Principal standard 8 professional ethics and advocacy

“The Principal advocates for policies of equity and excellence in support of the vision of the school, and acts with fairness, integrity, and a high level of professional ethics. .”

Principal Standard 8: Professional Ethics and Advocacy

  • Example Indicators:

  • Responds to the political, social, economic, legal, and cultural influences affecting the school.

  • Holds others in the school community accountable for demonstrating integrity and ethical behavior.

  • Seeks to make decisions that are just, fair, and equitable.

Additional survey questions

At the end of the survey, you’ll be asked:

  • Are the number of standards sufficient?

  • Are there key topics that are missing from the standards?

  • Are there topics that should be omitted?

  • Have the recurring themes of technology, cultural competence, and Teacher/Principal accountability for results been adequately integrated throughout the standards and indicators?

Additional Survey Questions

Additional survey questions1

At the end of the survey, you’ll be asked:

  • How can your local school district most effectively use these standards?

  • Would model teacher and principal evaluation systems based on the standards be useful to your local school district?

  • What next steps should the State Board of Education and NDE take to most effectively implement these standards?

Additional Survey Questions

Where do we go from here

What priorities for Educator Effectiveness policies in Nebraska?

NDE and State Board will need your views.

Where do we go from here?

Thanks for joining us today

THANK YOU. If you have further comments or questions, please e-mail:


THANKS for joining us today.


E-mail your comments directly to:

Donlynn Rice: donlynn.rice@nebraska.gov

Jim Havelka: jhavelka@gpcom.net

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