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Elementary teachers' perceptions of the Georgia Teacher Evaluation Program

Dissertation
Author: Derek Alan Engram
Abstract:
The purpose of this study was to examine, evaluate, and explain the perceptions and impact of the state-mandated teacher evaluation program on elementary school teachers, and to determine whether or not the results from the annual Georgia Teacher Evaluation Program causes teachers to significantly alter their current methods of teaching. This case study details a rural K-6 elementary school in a school district north of Atlanta, Georgia. Included in this study are teacher's perceptions of the extent to which the Georgia Teacher Evaluation Program (GTEP) increases their instructional effectiveness in the classroom, whether or not there is any significant differences in teacher's perceptions on the basis of experience, degree level, or grade level taught, if the GTEP is useful in planning professional development, and finally whether or not the GTEP is an accurate interpretation of how teachers meet the standards of their respective academic areas.

iv Table of Contents Acknowledgments iii List of Tables xi CHAPTER 1. INTRODUCTION 1 Background of the Study 2 Problem Statement 4 Purpose of the Study 5 Research Questions 6 Nature of the Study 6 Significance of the Study 7 Definition of Terms 7 Assumptions and Limitations 9 CHAPTER 2. REVIEW OF LITERATURE 10 A Historical Perspective of Teacher Evaluations 10 Federal Legislation Pertaining to Education 12 The Evolution of Teacher Evaluations 13 Impact of A Nation at Risk 15 Value Added Assessment 15 The Tennessee Value Added Assessment System 18 The Alabama Professional Education Personnel Evaluation 20 Program North Carolina: The ABCs of Public Education 22 Texas Accountability System/Comparable Improvement 23 Groups

v Arizona Measure of Academic Progress 25 The Oregon Teacher Work Sample Methodology 26 The Thompson, Colorado, School District Model 28 The Alexandria, Virginia, School District Model 30 Coventry School District, Rhode Island 31 Qualities of an Effective Teacher 33 Georgia Teacher Evaluation Program 37 Alternative Evaluation Models 41 The Learning Focused Schools Model 46 CHAPTER 3. METHODOLOGY 50 Research Questions 50 Research Methodology 51 Sample and Population 52 Instrumentation 53 Data Collection Procedures 54 Data Analysis Procedures 54 CHAPTER 4. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS 57 Qualitative Analysis 57 Teacher Interviews 58 Administrator Interview Summary 62 Teacher Observations 64 Quantitative Statistical Analysis 66

vi Inferential Statistics 74 Summary 98 CHAPTER 5. RESULTS, CONCLUSIONS, AND 99 RECOMMENDATIONS Summary 99 Conclusion of the Study 101 Recommendations for Further Research 106 REFERENCES 109 APPENDIX A. TEACHER SURVEY 115 APPENDIX B. ADMINISTRATOR INTERVIEW QUESTIONS 118 APPENDIX C. TEACHER INTERVIEW QUESTIONS 119 APPENDIX D. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 1: 120 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX E. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 2: 122 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX F. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 3: 124 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX G. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 4: 126 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX H. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 5: 128 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX I. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 6: 130 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX J. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 7: 132 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX K. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 8: 134 YEARS EXPERIENCE

vii APPENDIX L. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 9: 136 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX M. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 10: 138 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX N. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 11: 140 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX O. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 12: 142 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX P. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 13: 144 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX Q. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 14: 146 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX R. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 15: 148 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX S. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 16: 150 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX T. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 17: 152 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX U. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 18: 154 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX V. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 19: 156 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX W. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 20: 158 YEARS EXPERIENCE

APPENDIX X. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 1: 160 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX Y. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 2: 162 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX Z. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 3: 164 DEGREE LEVEL

viii APPENDIX AA. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 4: 166 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX BB. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 5: 168 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX CC. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 6: 170 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX DD. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 7: 172 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX EE. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 8: 174 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX FF. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 9: 176 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX GG. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 10: 178 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX HH. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 11: 180 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX II. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 12: 182 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX JJ. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 13: 184 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX KK. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 14: 186 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX LL. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 15: 188 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX MM. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 16: 190 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX NN. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 17: 192 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX OO. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 18: 194 DEGREE LEVEL

ix APPENDIX PP. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 19: 196 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX QQ. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 20: 198 DEGREE LEVEL

APPENDIX RR. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 1: 200 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX SS. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 2: 203 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX TT. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 3: 206 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX UU. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 4: 209 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX VV. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 5: 212 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX WW. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 6: 215 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX XX. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 7: 216 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX YY. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 8: 217 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX ZZ. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 9: 220 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX AAA. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 10: 223 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX BBB. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 11: 226 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX CCC. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 12: 229 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX DDD. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 13: 232 GRADE LEVEL

x APPENDIX EEE. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 14: 235 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX FFF. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 15: 238 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX GGG. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 16: 241 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX HHH. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 17: 244 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX III. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 18: 247 GRADE LEVEL

APPENDIX JJJ. ANOVA RESULTS OF SURVEY QUESTION 19: 250 GRADE LEVEL

xi List of Tables Table 1. Grade Level of Teachers Who Volunteered to Participate in the 58 Study Table 2. Interviewees’ Responses to Question 1 60 Table 3. Interviewees’ Responses to Question 2 60 Table 4. Interviewees’ Responses to Question 3 61 Table 5. Interviewees’ Responses to Question 4 61 Table 6. Interviewees’ Responses to Question 5 62 Table 7. Interviewees’ Responses to Question 6 62 Table 8. Teachers’ GTEP Evaluation Task 1 Summaries 65 Table 9. Teachers’ GTEP Evaluation Task 2 Summaries 66 Table 10. Teachers’ GTEP Evaluation Task 3 Summaries 66 Table 11. Response Rate for Teachers According to Years of 67 Experience Table 12. Response Rate for Teachers According to Degree Level 67 Table 13. Response Rate for Teachers According to Grade Level 67 Table 14. Mean, Standard Deviation, Range for Each Survey Question 68 Table 15. Survey Results Based on Degree Level 70 Table 16. Survey Results Based on Years of Experience 71 Table 17. Survey Results Based on Grade Level, Kindergarten-3rd 72 Grade Table 18. Survey Results Based on Grade Level, 4th-6th Grade and 73 Other Table 19. ANOVA Results for Years of Experience, Question 1 75 Table 20. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 1 76

xii Table 21. T Test Results, Question 1 76 Table 22. ANOVA Results for Years of Experience, Question 2 77 Table 23. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 2 77 Table 24. T Test Results, Question 2 77 Table 25. ANOVA Results for Years of Experience, Question 6 78 Table 26. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 6 78 Table 27. T Test Results, Question 6 79 Table 28. ANOVA Results for Years of Experience, Question 7 79 Table 29. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 7 80 Table 30. T Test Results, Question 7 80 Table 31. ANOVA Results for Years of Experience, Question 8 81 Table 32. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 8 81 Table 33. T Test Results, Question 8 81 Table 34. ANOVA Results for Years of Experience, Question 9 82 Table 35. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 9 82 Table 36. T Test Results, Question 9 83 Table 37. ANOVA Results for Degree Level, Question 8 83 Table 38. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 8 84 Table 39. T Test Results, Question 8 84 Table 40. ANOVA Results for Grade Level, Question 3 85 Table 41. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 3 85 Table 42. T Test Results, Question 3 85 Table 43. ANOVA Results for Grade Level, Question 13 87

xiii Table 44. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 13 88 Table 45. T Test Results, Question 13 88 Table 46. ANOVA Results for Grade Level, Question 16 90 Table 47. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 16 90 Table 48. T Test Results, Question 16 91 Table 49. ANOVA Results for Grade Level, Question 18 93 Table 50. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 18 93 Table 51. T Test Results, Question 18 93 Table 52. ANOVA Results for Grade Level, Question 19 95 Table 53. Mean Responses From Each Group, Question 19 96 Table 54. T Test Results, Question 19 96

1 CHAPTER 1. INTRODUCTION

America’s educational system has in recent times undergone a cataclysmic shift from the traditional obscurity model to the more contemporary results-oriented scheme (Danielson &McGreal, 2000). In doing so, the direct accountability of continually improving student achievement is placed square on the proverbial shoulders of the stakeholders who are charged with completing such a task. At the core of nearly all educational reform initiatives is the component of teacher evaluation. Just as a pilot influences a plane, or parents influence their children, teachers influence the productivity of their students. Therefore, it is essential that schools use the appropriate tools to distinguish good and bad teachers. In Georgia, most school districts evaluated their teachers with the Georgia Teacher Evaluation Program (GTEP), which outlines specific responsibilities of the classroom teacher. According to the Official Code of Georgia (Educational Code §20-2-210), there are seven roles that relate specifically to teacher evaluation: First, the role of the teacher in meeting the school’s student achievement goals including the academic gains of students assigned to the teacher; second, observations of the teacher by the principal and assistant principals during the delivery of instruction and at other times as appropriate; third, participation in professional development opportunities and the application of concepts learned to classroom and to school activities; fourth, communication and interpersonal skills as they relate to interaction with student, parent’s other teachers, administrators, and other

2 school personnel; fifth, timeliness and attendance for assigned responsibilities; sixth, adherence to school and local system procedures and rules; and seventh, personal conduct while in performance of school duties. Most school districts in the state feel that the GTEP adequately provides a process for meeting most of the aforementioned requirements. The state of Georgia has left the responsibility of conceptualizing and implementing a teacher evaluation system that meets the requirements of the Code Section 20-2-210 to the local unit of administration (i.e., the school district; GTEP, 1993). Due to the heightened focus on teacher accountability, many state governors have become increasingly interested in learning more about how to improve teacher evaluation and make it a tool for school improvement (Delisio, 2005). Literature suggests that many stakeholders directly related to the evaluations process feel that they are insignificant (Weiss, 1998) in judging the effectiveness of any particular teacher, and are extremely stressful, of little or no value, and are a barrier to high staff morale (Sawa, 1995). However, the literature also suggests that the teacher evaluation procedure has the potential to be a process that results in not only a true reflection of the teacher, but also a means of improving their abilities (Cromwell, 2003).

Background of the Study Although there has always been a focus on evaluating teachers, President George W. Bush’s signature of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) on January 8, 2003, has brought this issue to the forefront in today’s schoolhouses. This monumental educational reform bill is simply the reauthorization of President Lyndon Johnson’s Elementary and Secondary

3 Education Act (ESEA), which was America’s first comprehensive federal law that provided funding for kindergarten through 12th grade (Susan, 2002). A key element of the NCLB is Title II, Part A, “Improving Teacher Quality”; rooted in scientifically proven methods, this title is aimed at increasing every state’s overall teacher quality in a proactive approach at raising student achievement. This new scientific approach at increasing student achievement differs significantly to the previous ESEA approach, in that now every Federal education program must statistically prove with measurable results that it succeeds in educating America’s youth (Schultz, n.d.). Under Title II, school districts are required to have highly qualified teachers in every classroom by the end of the 2005-06 school year (San Diego County Board of Education [SDCOE], n.d.). To be deemed “highly qualified,” teachers must have: a bachelor’s degree; full state certification; and prove that they know every subject they teach (U.S. Department of Education [USDOE], 2005). While there is some flexibility and leeway for districts to get all of its teachers to this level, the bar has been raised to ensure that whoever is responsible for educating America’s youth is legitimately capable of doing so. This is currently required for all new teachers, but existing teachers are given to the end of 2006 to meet these requirements. Currently, only Wisconsin is the only state that has a highly qualified teacher in every classroom (Schultz). The evaluation of teachers can be dated back to 19th-century one-room school houses, where administrators would randomly inspect whether or not the teacher was meeting the prescribed curriculum with their students (Public Broadcast Systems, n.d.). Today, there is a greater need for more accurate accounts of teacher evaluations to determine whether or not the correct content is being taught in the classroom. During the past decade many teachers have been developing multi-dimensional, integrated learning environments

4 that may be hard to evaluate by an administrator who sits in during only one class period. Principals often use minimal teaching competencies (direct instruction) as criteria to judge teachers’ performance, but a growing number of teachers are already performing beyond the minimal level (Weiss, 1998).

Problem Statement It is not known if the customary evaluation of teachers results in an accurate summary of a person’s teaching ability, or can be used as a true instrument for genuine improvement. Principals and teachers are becoming frustrated with the traditional methods used for annual evaluation of job performance, which ultimately determines the teacher’s effectiveness, thus tenure, promotion, or even dismissal (Boyd, 1989). Although there are increasingly new and innovative ways that enhance the traditional means of evaluation, many school districts and local units of authority (LUA) continue to use the outdated model. The literature suggests that there have been many different ways that schools have tried to alter the current course of teacher evaluations (peer review, assistance programs, portfolios, etc.), all of which have had varying levels of success (Weiss, 1998). It is imperative that the evaluation process yields true change in the behaviors of teachers, either by promoting good, or eliminating bad teaching. Under NCLB all schools must make adequately yearly progress (AYP) in order to retain their accreditation. The Georgia Department of Education refers to this as the yearly measurement of student participation and achievement on all mandatory high-stakes tests. Thus, if the preset number of students fails to meet the established benchmark score on a particular test, then the entire school will be labeled as needing improvement, and will not have made AYP for that entire year. Because

5 teachers are the ones charged with adequately preparing students for the tests, it becomes evident that schools need the best teachers possible in the classroom. Therefore, the annual evaluations of teachers must result in true improvement in their teaching ability, and not simply be another proverbial hoop that they must jump through year after year.

Purpose of the Study This study was intended to describe the perceptions of the faculty regarding factors that manipulate teaching practices. The first purpose was to determine whether or not the GTEP causes teachers to alter their methods of instruction. The second purpose was to determine if teachers perceive the GTEP as a tool that increases their instructional effectiveness in the classroom. The third purpose was to predict if there was any significant difference in teacher perceptions of the GTEP based on three factors: Number of years of teaching experience; Degree level of the teacher; and Grade level of the teacher. The fourth purpose was to determine the GTEP was a useful tool in establishing professional development needs of the faculty at the study’s elementary school. Finally, the fifth purpose was to decide if the GTEP is an accurate interpretation of how teachers are working to meet the professional standards for the various academic disciplines throughout the school. This case study highlighted a rural elementary school (K-6). The study obtained qualitative data to determine whether or not the current teacher evaluation method was an effective tool in improving the manner of teaching, as well as finding out what other strategies within the school promotes good teaching practices.

6 Research Questions 1. Do the results of the Georgia Teacher Evaluation Process (GTEP) cause teachers to alter their methods of instruction?

2. Do teachers perceive that the GTEP increases their instructional effectiveness in the classroom?

3. Are there any significant differences in teacher perceptions of the GTEP based on

a. Number of years of teaching experience? b. Degree level of the teacher? c. Grade level (K-6) of their students? 4. Is the GTEP a useful tool in establishing the professional development needs of teachers?

5. Is the GTEP an accurate interpretation of how teachers are working to meet the professional standards for the various academic disciplines throughout the school?

Nature of the Study The scope of this one-shot case study was to determine the effectiveness of the teacher evaluations process and other school practices that contribute to improving teaching ability at the study’s elementary school. A mixed methodology approach using qualitative methods (analysis of interviews, observations, and documents) were used to determine the effectiveness of the evaluation process and practices. Quantitative data was also used in the collection of teacher surveys, in order to provide base-line information about the current status of teacher evaluations.

7 Significance of the Study A teacher evaluation system should give teachers useful feedback on classroom needs, the opportunity to learn new techniques, and counsel from principals and other teachers on how to make changes in their classrooms (Boyd, 1989). Unfortunately, many principals and teachers feel that the current method of evaluation falls short of providing a true glimpse of the teacher. Rather, evaluations are simple summative snapshots that can make a first-rate teacher seem awful, and poor teachers seem exemplary. It is crucial that schools incorporate an effective means of teacher evaluation that is perceived by both teachers and administrators as enhancing the quality of teaching in today’s classrooms.

Definition of Terms Accountability. This term implies that schools are ultimately responsible for the amount of student achievement that takes place in their building. Accountability in schools is determined by their actual scores on high-stakes tests annually given to every student. Adequately Yearly Progress (AYP). This is an annual measurement of student participation and achievement of statewide assessments and other academic indicators. If schools fail to meet the minimum standards set forth by AYP, then the school will be labeled as Needs Improvement. Administrator. This term refers to the person responsible for the daily operations and leadership at a particular school site. Included in this term are principals, assistant principals, program administrators, coordinators, assistant superintendents, and superintendent. Certified personnel. These are faculty and staff within a school district who hold a valid Georgia Teaching Certificate.

8 Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). America’s first comprehensive federal education law that provides funding for kindergarten through 12th grade which was enacted by President Johnson in 1965. Evaluation. This is the process through which administrators evaluate teacher performance, which is authorized by the districts board of education. The evaluations process judges the worthiness of teachers, and is used for promotion, tenure, demotion, or dismissal. The results of the evaluation is a formal document where one copy is given to the teacher, one to the principal, and one to the teachers personal file at the personnel office. Formative evaluation. A tool conducted during the year, generally for the purpose of providing immediate feedback to the teacher about their teaching ability. Georgia Teacher Duties and Responsibilities Instrument (GTDRI). An on-going school-wide assessment of certified personnel that describes the expectations for teachers in addition to the teaching tasks outlined in the Georgia Teacher Observation Instrument (GTOI). Georgia Teacher Evaluation Program (GTEP). Georgia’s program to evaluate all certified personnel who are employed at least 120 days. The two models that are used in this process are the GTOI and the (GTDRI. Georgia Teacher Observation Instrument (GTOI). The form that a principal will use when officially observing a teacher per GTEP requirements. No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB). The federal reauthorization of the ESEA passed in 2001, Public Law 107-110, which is broken down into 10 titles outlining various elements of education.

9 Peer assistance. A variation to traditional teacher evaluations where a veteran teacher provides support to a teacher deemed as needing additional help. Professional development. This is a system guided by school districts to continually improve the quality of teachers within a school. Professional development plan. This is instituted when a teacher consistently performs low on their evaluations. Stakeholder. This is anybody affected by a particular school (i.e., student, parent, teacher, principal, etc.). Summative evaluation. A tool used by administrator to judge to effeteness of a teacher used mainly in making personnel decisions. Teacher practice. The overall methods used by classroom teachers to deliver instruction.

Assumptions and Limitations 1. The participants in the study responded honestly to the surveys.

2. The ultimate findings of this study will have a level of applicability to all elementary schools (K-6) within the district.

3. The data was accurately recoded and analyzed.

4. The methods used in the study were valid indicators of case study research.

10 CHAPTER 2. REVIEW OF LITERATURE

A Historical Perspective of Teacher Evaluations Evaluation is a means toward providing better education for students, improving academic performance, and making better personnel decisions (Miller, Finley, & Vancko, 2000). The evaluation of teachers is not a new issue, but rather one that has been around since America’s one-room school houses. Back then teacher evaluations were conducted at the local level to determine whether or not the teacher was meeting the standards of that particular community. However, with the ushering in of the Industrial Age, unions began to become involved in setting specific evaluative criteria for teachers, as well as rules for dismissal and advancement (Markey, 2004). The Soviets launching of Sputnik I showed how the American educational system was failing our students with specific regards to science and mathematics, and highlighted the need for more stringent evaluation procedures for teachers in these subject areas (DeBoer, n.d.). Regardless of what may be occurring throughout the nation or world, the evaluation de jour for teachers seems to emulate America’s growing needs. The development of educational evaluations have included many people, and defined many eras. For example, “The Age of Efficiency and Testing” (1900-1930) was greatly influenced by Fredrick Taylor; “Taylorism” still affects life today because of the newly acquired emphasis on systemization, standardization, and efficiency (Stufflebeam, 2000). By

11 1915, 30 to 40 large school districts in the United States were using surveys to critique all aspects of educational life. This movement marked a paradigm shift toward objectivity as a the basis for determining quality teaching. “The Tylerian Age” lasted from 1930 until 1945, and is named after Ralph W. Tyler, who is known as the father of educational evaluation. He began linking curriculum and evaluation together, and used testing to justify their correlation. Along with John Dewey, Tyler became directly involved in the Progressive Educational Movement during the Great Depression, which sought out best practices among educators (Stufflebeam). The time period from 1946 until 1957 is labeled as “The Age of Innocence” because work in evaluation had no social purpose. Even though it was a time of poverty and despair in many parts of the United States, and where prejudice and segregation dominated, it was also a time of educational expansion. New buildings were erected, innovative educational institution (community colleges) emerged, small school districts consolidated in order to provide services like cafeterias, technical education, and music instruction (Stufflebeam, 2000). Standardized testing was a chief development at this time; new nationally standardized tests were published, and school systems bought them by the thousands. Machine scoring of mass amounts of tests emerged along with the establishment of the Educational Testing Service (1947). “The Age of Development” is referred to as the time from 1958 until 1972, and began with the evaluations of large-scale curriculum development projects funded by the federal government. As previously stated, the successful Sputnik launch in 1957 caused a reactive approach toward improving education in America, prompting the federal government to create the National Defense Education Act to improve students in the areas of mathematics,

12 science, and foreign language (Stufflebeam, 2000). The decade from 1973 until 1983 is classified as “The Age of Professionalization,” which marks the time when the fields of evaluation began to solidify and emerge as an actual profession. Finally, “The Age of Expansion and Integration” marks the time from 1983 until 2001; proposed reforms such as charter schools, vouchers, and privatization of schools are all rooted in the belief of introducing competition into education will lead to improvements. Curriculum frameworks are now developed to offer teachers a roadmap toward student improvement. The standards- based curriculum reform movement is now in 49 states. Many states link student performance to high-stakes test results, which have direct consequence on individual school districts, schools, and teachers (Stufflebeam).

Federal Legislation Pertaining to Education On April 9, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson enacted the ESEA as the first comprehensive federal education law that provides funding for kindergarten through 12th grade. For the first time in our nation’s history, specific funds were set aside for educator’s professional development, instructional materials, and resources to support educational programs, and parental involvement promotion. Although the act was originally authorized through 1970, the government continually reauthorizes it every 5 years. Today the ESEA is known as the NCLB, Public Law 107-110 (Susan, 2002). An essential element of the NCLB is Title II, Part A “Improving Teacher Quality”; rooted in scientifically proven methods, this title is aimed at increasing every state’s overall teacher quality in a proactive approach at raising student achievement. This new scientific approach at increasing student achievement differs significantly to the previous ESEA

13 approach, in that now every Federal education program must statistically prove with measurable results that it succeeds in educating America’s youth (Schultz, n.d.). Under Title II, school districts are required to have highly qualified teachers in every classroom by the end of the 2005-06 school year (SDCOE, n.d.). To be deemed “highly qualified,” teachers must have: a bachelor’s degree; full state certification; and prove that they know every subject they teach (USDOE, 2005). While there is some flexibility and leeway for districts to get all of its teachers to this level, the bar has been raised to ensure that whoever is responsible for educating America’s youth is legitimately capable of doing so. This is currently required for all new teachers, but existing teachers are given to the end of 2006 to meet these requirements. Currently, Wisconsin is the only state that has a highly qualified teacher in every classroom (Schultz). The need for highly qualified teachers will continue to grow, especially when school systems begin failing to meet AYP due to the increased expectations for students. In order for systems to constantly meet AYP, the most knowledgeable and effective teachers must be in the classroom, thus highlighting the paramount need for an accurate teacher evaluation process.

Full document contains 267 pages
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to examine, evaluate, and explain the perceptions and impact of the state-mandated teacher evaluation program on elementary school teachers, and to determine whether or not the results from the annual Georgia Teacher Evaluation Program causes teachers to significantly alter their current methods of teaching. This case study details a rural K-6 elementary school in a school district north of Atlanta, Georgia. Included in this study are teacher's perceptions of the extent to which the Georgia Teacher Evaluation Program (GTEP) increases their instructional effectiveness in the classroom, whether or not there is any significant differences in teacher's perceptions on the basis of experience, degree level, or grade level taught, if the GTEP is useful in planning professional development, and finally whether or not the GTEP is an accurate interpretation of how teachers meet the standards of their respective academic areas.