Instructional Leadership in Action

3 New Resources to Keep Your Teacher/Principal Evaluation System on Track

by Patty Maxfield on Jan 5, 2015

Teacher Evaluation

A few months into the second year of statewide implementation of new teacher and principal evaluation systems, most educators in Washington state seem to know their way around the new approach to evaluation and professional development. In a statewide survey, almost 80 per cent of teachers said that they were very or somewhat familiar with the revised evaluation requirements. Among principals and district leaders, almost 90 per cent reported understanding the various components of the teacher evaluation.

As I travel around the state to coach teachers and principals on how to use and implement our 5D framework and 5D+ Teacher Evaluation Rubric, I'm excited to see so many educators embrace this new growth-oriented evaluation mindset.

We all know that improving instruction doesn't happen overnight, it's an intentional and lifelong process that requires constant attention and focus. To keep the new system on track, districts need to look beyond the initial implementation and plan for the long run.

Here are three short updates on new state guidelines and upcoming Center for Educational Leadership (CEL) resources that can help you with this important task:

1. Revised rater agreement document

OSPI recently released an updated rater agreement document. Rater agreement is the extent to which the scores between the raters have consistency and accuracy against the instructional frameworks and the corresponding rubrics.

The updated document includes a full definition of Stage III in the ongoing professional development of all those doing evaluations. In Stage III, districts should ensure ongoing framework rater agreement and fidelity of implementation.

In practice that means that all school districts in Washington state need to continually think about rater assurance. “How can we provide ongoing professional development so all evaluators can demonstrate rater assurance?” is a question district leaders should be asking themselves – and have a plan to answer.

2. Upcoming CEL rater reliability training component 

To help school districts with the ongoing challenge of keeping raters consistent and accurate, CEL is currently developing a training component centered on rater reliability. The training will include 5 one-hour professional development sessions, each with a short video lesson, an accompanying scored rubric and a facilitator’s guide.

This district facilitated training will help districts using the 5D+ Teacher Evaluation Rubric provide on-going rater assurance training and gives district leaders and principals a convenient process to conduct important professional development. It will be available for use in the spring of 2015.

3. New round of framework specialist training

At this point, everybody who evaluates classroom teachers, principals, and assistant principals probably has worked with a framework specialist. Over the past two years, framework specialists have conducted countless Stage I & II professional development sessions and they remain a crucial component in the new teacher/principal evaluation system.

This spring, CEL will be training new framework specialists to replace those who have left and to keep up with ongoing demand for professional development. The good news: school districts can send people to these training sessions and develop an in-house professional development resource. Wait for an OSPI announcement in January if you want to send somebody.

I hope you will take advantage of some of these resources. Let us know if you have any questions or want know more about how we can support your ongoing learning. You can contact us via email ( or tweet to @uwcel.

Get a copy of our 5D+ Teacher Evaluation Rubric

Topics: Teaching Effectiveness, Teacher Evaluation

About the author: Patty Maxfield

Dr. Patty Maxfield supports school and district partnerships focused on building leadership capacity and instructional expertise. She is a strong advocate of using evaluation practices as a formative process and employing instructional practice data to inform the development and implementation of professional development. Patty has been involved with public education for more than 35 years as a teacher, teacher leader, facilitator and administrator. Her passion is continually enhancing instructional practice to develop democratic, thinking-based learning for students and teachers. Patty received her Ed.D. degree from the University of Washington's College of Education and her master’s degree in education administration from Western Washington University.

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