[1980, revised 1987, 1989, 1991, 2004, 2010]
Accountability for professional competence is a shared
responsibility. Teachers and administrators have the responsibility to review
periodically their own effectiveness and to seek improvements as part of the
continuing process of their professional development. The profession, as a
whole, has a responsibility for developing adequate programs of professional
growth, supervision and evaluation. School boards have a responsibility for the
provision of adequate resources to implement programs of professional growth,
supervision and evaluation.
Three distinct processes—professional
growth, supervision and evaluation—provide the basis for procedures that
facilitate professional competence. The Association supports the principle that
this process is based on a standard of practice established by the profession.
Professional Growth Plans
All teachers, including administrators, have a
responsibility for their individual and collective continuing professional
growth. The growth plans are self-authored, growth directed and reflect an
assessment of the individual’s professional learning needs. Teachers, school
and system administrators must not be expected to adopt a school’s or school
system’s improvement goals or format for their individual professional growth
Professional growth is a career long
process which involves individual reflection and dialogue with colleagues about
professional practice. In developing the written growth plan, teachers and
administrators reflect their unique learning needs, focus on goals that are
consistent with the professional practice standard and modify their plans over
the school year as they share and review them with colleagues. The professional
growth plan should have clear expectations, processes and timelines.
Professional growth plans are the
responsibility and property of the individual. Although a copy may be kept in
the supervising administrator’s office, the plan should be returned to the
author at the end of the school year. A professional growth plan may not be
used for evaluation unless the author requests that it be used for this
purpose. The ownership and use of the plan should be clearly established with
Resources used for professional growth
programs have a significant potential to improve professional practice;
therefore, school boards, in allocating resources to the three
processes—growth, supervision and evaluation—should ensure that the largest
portion be directed to professional growth programs.
The overall goal of supervision is to promote
professional learning and development. The purpose of supervision is to provide
support, guidance and development opportunities; observe and receive
information from qualified sources; provide direct, constructive feedback about
professional practice; identify professional behaviour and practices that
should be recognized as exemplars; identifying professional behaviours and
practices that may require an evaluation; and support school improvement and
staff development. It is important that the appropriate purpose for supervision
is clearly established.
The process followed during supervision
for all of these purposes must be characterized by a climate of trust and
support, an ongoing and continuous process, and a shared responsibility. The process
should be based upon a collegial, collaborative model that includes direct and
differential approaches and individual input into methods and processes.
Relevant information and observations should be shared on an ongoing basis
which includes access to any notes or documentation taken during supervision.
Supervision programs should be utilized
for all certificated staff. Supervision of teachers is conducted by school
principals; supervision of school principals and central office certificated
staff is conducted by the superintendent.
Evaluation is a formal process whereby information
that is gathered and recorded over a specified period of time and subjected to
reasoned judgment (including the consideration of context) is ultimately used
to make a judgment about the teacher’s employment status or certification. The
results of the judgmental function may be used for making decisions for
purposes of employment, such as continuing contracts, promotion, transfer or
termination, or for making decisions about certification including permanent
certification, suspension of certification or decertification. Another result
of the judgmental function may be to make decisions when through supervision
there is reason to believe that the individual’s professional practice does not
meet the established standard.
Evaluation policies and procedures in a
school jurisdiction should be developed by a collaborative process involving
superintendents, trustees, administrators and teachers. It is important that
teachers and administrators have a clear role in the development of policy.
An evaluation may be conducted for the
following purposes: (a) upon written request of the individual, (b) for the
purpose of gathering information related to the employment decisions of a
teacher who does not hold a continuing contract or a permanent teaching
certificate or in the case of an administrator who does not hold a continuing
designation, and (c) when there is reason to believe that an individual’s
professional practice does not meet the established standard.
Evaluation of teachers is the
responsibility of the principal and evaluation of principals is the
responsibility of the superintendent. Should it be necessary to include another
member of the school or central office administration team in the evaluation,
the individual’s role must be outlined in writing prior to the commencement of
the evaluation. An independent evaluator may be appropriate in some instances
and may be requested by the teacher or administrator to undertake the
evaluation of that individual’s professional practice.
Evaluations must follow a procedure which
begins with the reasons for the evaluation, as well as a statement of the
process, criteria and standards to be used. The procedure should be completed
within reasonable timelines, include discussion of written reports that are
discussed with the individual and contain the right of appeal.
An effective teacher evaluation process
must, in reflecting the rules of natural justice, be based only on evidence gathered
during the evaluation. The process conducted within a reasonable timeline
should include pre and post visitation conferences and observations of the
teacher’s teaching and other activities related to the teacher’s assignment.
Further, the process should, while providing the teacher with ongoing feedback,
culminate in a formal written report the teacher has opportunity to discuss and
to which a written response may be appended before it is placed in the
teacher’s personnel file. Access to the personnel file, which contains all the
information concerning the teacher, is limited to the teacher and certificated
personnel with administrative responsibilities directly related to that
teacher. The evaluation procedure should also provide for an appeal process and
be conducted in accordance with the Code of Professional Conduct. Evaluation
should not be based upon extracurricular activities, assessment by parents or
students, the use of student achievement data or the teacher’s community
An effective evaluation process for school
administrators must be reasonable, based on the rules of procedural fairness
and natural justices and involve the administrator as a full participant. The
process conducted within a reasonable timeline should start with providing the
administrator with written notification of the evaluation and reasons for it.
The evaluation must be based on identifiable data which is made available to
the administrator and reflect the Principal Quality Practice Guideline.
Quality leadership occurs when the
administrator, through ongoing analysis of the school context, demonstrates
professional actions, judgments and decisions that are in the best educational
interests of students and supports the provision of optimum teaching and
learning opportunities. The administrator must be advised when expectations for
the position are not being met, be provided with appropriate assistance and
time to address performance deficiencies and be informed of the possible
outcomes of a failure to improve performance. In keeping with the principle
that the growth, supervision and evaluation should pertain to all certificated
staff in a school district, teachers have a role in the evaluation of school
based and central office administrators. The Code of Professional Conduct would
apply to the process as to all supervision and evaluation processes.
Evaluations that are initiated when the
supervising principal or superintendent, through supervision, has reason to
believe that an individual’s practice does not meet the established standard
must adhere to a comprehensive process. First, the supervising principal or
superintendent meets with the individual to discuss concerns identified through
supervision. This meeting results in a continuation of the ongoing supervision
process or receiving a notice of evaluation. Where a notice of evaluation is
issued, the notice must include the reasons for and purpose of the evaluation,
the process, criteria and standards to be used, reasonable timelines and
possible outcomes of the evaluation. Following the completion of the evaluation
process as outlined in the notice, an evaluation report is issued which may
determine that the individual meets the established standard and continues with
the ongoing supervision and growth process, or does not meet the established
standard and an additional evaluation period is necessary, or does not meet the
established standard and a notice of remediation may be issued. Where a notice
of remediation is issued, the notice removes the individual from the ongoing
supervision and growth process and outlines possible consequences and
expectations for improvement. The notice contains support and assistance that
are available, adequate time to meet expectations and notice of a subsequent
evaluation within 100 school days. The remediation report may result in a range
of possibilities including return of the individual to the ongoing supervision
and growth process, an additional period of remediation, a change of assignment
or a recommendation that the individual’s contract of employment or
administrative designation be terminated. If on completion of an evaluation the
superintendent concludes that the teacher’s suitability for certification is in
question, the superintendent shall report to the executive secretary to
initiate a professional practice review hearing.
The professional growth, supervision and
evaluation policies and procedures are three distinct processes which,
carefully implemented, provide the basis for establishing, developing and
maintaining a standard of professional practice.