Teacher Evaluation to Enhance Professional Practice

By Charlotte Danielson; Thomas L. McGreal | Go to book overview
Save to active project


Karen and Charles (our teacher and principal from the Prologue) are trapped in a meaningless ritual of activity called “evaluation.” They go through the motions of conducting conferences and observations, discussing teaching, and evaluating performance. They know, on some level, that the process they are using does not satisfy either of the essential purposes of evaluation—ensuring quality in teaching and promoting professional learning.

As we have demonstrated in this book, however, it is possible to employ evaluation procedures that engage both teachers and administrators in a professional dialogue about students, their learning, and teaching. This can be accomplished without radically restructuring the entire school district, spending huge amounts of money, or engaging in other kinds of efforts often demanded by transforming ideas. Instead, the educators involved simply must think differently about an activity—teacher evaluation—in which they are already engaged and which is required by law.

Using such an approach, for example, Karen could have conducted a self-assessment; she could have identified areas in which she wanted to concentrate (such as the English-language learners in her classroom, or the new math or writing programs). She and Charles could have developed a plan to address those issues, and Karen could have worked with colleagues in pursuing her plan. Karen and Charles's conversations could have been about genuine instructional matters, and both would have grown professionally through the experience.

This approach would involve Karen in an active role, through self-assessment, assembling items for a portfolio, and professional conversation. Even if Charles makes the final judgment, Karen is more actively engaged in the process, offering interpretations for classroom events, providing rationales for instructional decisions, and offering evidence of nonclassroom aspects of her responsibilities (such as samples of letters sent to parents of her non-English speaking students). Further, Karen would have been invited to question Charles's judgments, offer additional evidence of her skill, or provide alternate interpretations of the same information. This would not constitute insubordination—Charles, after all, is making the final judgment—but it would provide a forum for genuine professional conversation. And as a by-product of the conversation, Charles would be likely to learn as well.


Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this page

Cited page

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Teacher Evaluation to Enhance Professional Practice


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 159

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?