Teacher evaluation criteria always generates controversy.
Measurement tests that are designed to determine the characteristics of a given teacher, learner’s performance test score and teacher’s performance in the classroom have been used as the primary techniques for teacher evaluation, but it is not always effective.
These teacher evaluation criteria are intended for two purposes, which are to determine how competent the teacher is and to promote the professional expansion and development of the teacher.
Carrying out an effective teacher evaluation is reliant on several things.
Both formative and summative evaluation needs to be carried out. The formative evaluation will serve as a tool or means of developing and at the same time improving teaching or instructions. The summative evaluation on its own will also serve as a tool or means of taking decisions as it has to do with the staff or workforce of the given school.
Effective teacher evaluation criteria should be able to provide teachers valuable response, criticism or response based on the needs of a given classroom. It should also be able to allow the teacher the privilege of learning new methods of teaching, and also grant them the privilege of being guided by the principal of the school in particular, and in general the teachers of that given school on what steps to take in modifying their classrooms.
In order for the above listed goals to be achieved, those who are playing the part of evaluators are under obligation to first of all, outline the precise teacher evaluation criteria and measures.
In setting the criterion, it should as much as possible,
- co-relate with relation to vital teaching ability or skill,
- be very purposeful and objective as possible,
- be unmistakably communicated to the teachers involved in the evaluation process. This should be done before the beginning of evaluation and after the evaluation, an appraisal should be made. And finally,
- it should be related or associated to the professional development of the teacher or teachers in question.
The people that are assigned to act as the evaluators should bring to the floor, the variance in teaching abilities or skills. If the given teacher’s capabilities or performance is being accessed from various sources, it will go a long way in helping the evaluators to carry out a more precise and accurate evaluation.
There exist several techniques or methods that can be used by evaluators.
- Monitoring and examining classroom activities: This very method seems to be widely used. It involves the process of collecting data for the sole purpose of evaluation. One aim of using this method is to be able to acquire a report based on the activities and performance of the teacher. This observation is not something that will be done in a matter of hours. The evaluating team will need to carry out an extensive evaluation which should not be restricted to just one class. In carrying out this evaluation, it could be official and properly planned or it could be made unofficial. What ever form of this evaluation was taken, each has the ability to offer information that is worthwhile.
- Lesson plans and classroom record appraisal: Any teacher, who has given himself ample time to go through the aims of his teaching, will end up providing the best lesson plans. Other classroom activities which are, but not limited to assignments and, tests will go a long way to show if the lesson plans, topic taught and tests written are linked.
- Increase in the number of evaluators: Majority of the evaluations that is been done in most schools are conducted mainly by the principal of the school. Though sometimes, the supervisors from various arms of the school handle the evaluation. Another thing again is that in some locations, the administrators whom the teacher is working directly under acts as the evaluators of the teacher’s achievement or performance. If it turns out that the one aim of this evaluation is to establish the competence of a given teacher, then the system of using just the administrators will work just very fine. But then if the aim is to encourage growth, other persons should be invited to serve as evaluators. In most cases, self or one person evaluation aids in giving the teachers clarity on the work they are doing. This kind of evaluation is being done by few schools.
Should the schools also engage in the activity of evaluating students of the institution, the teachers stand to gain more from it. A lot of teachers out there are looking for any possible means to modify and expand more in their teaching profession. They do this by leaving room for criticism, comments and responses from other teachers or even students based on the fact that they are the ones the teachers spend most of their time with, both in interaction and in teaching. This perception of theirs should be put into consideration while the teacher evaluation process is going on.