SB22-070 (Bridges) Improvements to Teacher Performance Evaluations
This bill specifies the Department of Education’s duties related to licensed teacher performance evaluation systems, which the department must comply with beginning in the 2023-24 school year. These duties include the creation of modified rubrics for teacher evaluations, and the provision of free evaluator training to districts, among other requirements. The bill also directs the State Board of Education to ensure 30% of educators’ evaluations are based upon the academic growth of their students, including up to 10% collective measures for a school or grade level. The remainder of the evaluation would then be based upon an educators’ attainment of overall quality standards through observation of practice. For performance evaluations in the 2021-22 and 2022-23 school years, the bill prohibits the use of measures of student academic growth.
The Children’s Campaign supports this bill. We know that classroom teaching is a top in-school contributor to student achievement and success, and believe strongly that annual performance reviews can be a tool to drive the professional growth and development of our educator workforce. After more than a decade of implementing educator evaluation, SB-070 makes reasonable changes that are aligned with research-based principles that have been incorporated into exemplar evaluation systems across the country. These changes are responsive to recommendations brought directly by educators in a process that the Children’s Campaign co-convened in 2018-2019. Specifically, we support the bill‘s provisions that streamline and differentiate the process for consistently highly effective personnel, encourage innovative methods of conducting observations and support quality training provided to evaluators, and address common educator frustrations around the percentage of evaluation based on academic growth and collective measures.
The bill was heard in the Senate Education Committee on Feb 10 and passed on a 6-1 vote. Vice President of Education Initiatives, Leslie Colwell, testified in support.