D204 PERA Update

In 2010, Governor Pat Quinn signed the Performance Evaluation Reform Act into effect, creating a universal system to evaluate teachers.

The next phase of this legislation requires school districts to measure student growth and have it account for at least 30 percent of a teacher’s evaluation, starting next year.

“The people that will be tested, for the elementary classrooms, it will be their entire class. For middle school and high school teachers, they must select at least one entire section of students, so for one of their classes,” said Paul Gamboa, President of the Indian Prairie Education Association.

Licensed staff are currently ranked by one of four ratings: excellent, proficient, needs improvement and unsatisfactory.

In order to incorporate student growth into this system, the district assembled a joint committee who has worked together over the last three years to determine the best way to measure student growth, including pretests, target growth goals and post tests.

“The joint committee had to come up with assessments, the student characteristics and enrollment parameters, the assignments that would be covered under the law, and also translating growth measures into performance ratings,” added Gamboa.

The board’s largest concern is that student growth measurement cannot accurately be assessed by mid March, as required by law.

“So we’re not measuring a teacher for an entire year. We’re actually in an evaluation cycle, measuring them and giving them 30 percent of their evaluation based on a six-month window,” said Board Member, Michael Raczak.

However, the majority of teacher evaluation results will still rely on administrative observation.

The next step for the district will be to finalize their decisions and make necessary adjustments before this fall.

Naperville News 17’s Rachel Pierson reports.

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