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THE STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT / THE UNIVERSITY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK / ALBANY, NY 12234

 

To:                                             Higher Education Committee
 
From:                                        Joseph P. Frey
 
Subject:                                    Proposed Principal’s Performance Evaluation System and Feedback from the Field
 
Date:                                         June 4, 2010   
 
Authorizations:                        

 

 

SUMMARY

 

Issue for Decision

To review feedback from the educational community on a proposed Principal Performance Evaluation System (PPES) as defined in the draft Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders (attachment A) document developed by the School Leader Evaluation/Assessment Working Group and the General Advisory Group to the Wallace Foundation Grant: Building a Cohesive Leadership System (CLS) in New York State.        

 

Reason(s) for Consideration


              This proposal is consistent with the Regents Policy direction as set forth in New York State's round 2 Race to the Top application.

             

Proposed Handling

This item will come before the Higher Education Committee at its June 2010 meeting for discussion and approval of the guiding principles and required components contained in the Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders to serve as the basis for a Principal Performance Evaluation System.  The Principal Performance Evaluation System is intended to be the annual professional performance review for principals. Any principal evaluation system which is approved by the Board of Regents will have to conform with Chapter 103 of the Laws of 2010 in relation to the evaluation of teachers and principals.

 

Dr. Margaret Orr, professor of educational administration at Bank Street College and member of the General Advisory Group to the Wallace Foundation Cohesive Leadership System grant and Dr. Robert McClure, professor of educational administration at The College of Saint Rose and project director for the Wallace grant will be available to answer questions of the Regents regarding this item. Upon approval by the Board of Regents, regulations will be developed with input from the educational community and brought back for final approval in the fall of 2010.

Background Information

In February 2010, the Higher Education Committee reviewed the draft Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders document which was developed as a major initiative under the $3 million Wallace Foundation Grant: Building a Cohesive Leadership System (CLS) in New York State.  More specifically, the grant called for the creation of a "school leader performance evaluation" to be based on The Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium (ISLLC) Standards, 2008, linked to meaningful personalized professional development focused on improving teaching and learning, administered locally and required through State regulations with the approval of the Board of Regents.  To guide the development of New York State's Cohesive Leadership System, the General Advisory Group was formed consisting of Department staff working in collaboration with national experts and representatives from the following grant partners:

 

Led initially by Dr. Joseph Murphy, a national expert on the design and construction of performance evaluations for school leaders, members of the General Advisory Group reviewed relevant research, studied evaluation models  and met with education department officials from states where principal evaluation systems have recently been implemented (Delaware, Ohio, Iowa and New Mexico).  Based upon the importance and enormity of the task as well as the need to involve both school and district level leaders in the conversation, a decision was reached by the General Advisory Group to create a School Leader Evaluation and Assessment Working Group to identify research-based design elements and components for a new school leader performance and evaluation system designed to increase the impact of school leaders on improving student achievement.  This group included members of the General Advisory Group as well as principals selected by their state organizations (School Administrators Association of New York State, and New York State Federation of School Administrators) and superintendents selected by the New York State Council of School Superintendents. 

As stated in New York's Race to the Top application: The PPES will be built upon the ISLLC 2008 standards and other research-based leadership standards and designed to differentiate principal effectiveness employing multiple measures.  To accurately assess a principal’s effectiveness as a school leader and ensure a sharp focus on the connection among strong school leadership, teacher effectiveness, and student achievement, the PPES will require:  (1) specific and measurable performance goals which address substantive issues identified through analysis of student achievement data and other factors that influence teaching and learning; (2) action plans that are based on a thorough understanding and application of relevant research and ensure attainment of goals; (3) growth in student learning and achievement; (4) feedback from multiple sources including educational stakeholders; and (5) identification of targeted areas for professional development and evidence of growth.  In addition, in conjunction with implementation of the new law, the PPES will include the composite effectiveness score gains for teachers supervised by each principal and the gap-closing performance of those teachers.

The group met over a 15 month span reaching consensus on the draft Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders which was presented for conceptual approval to the Higher Education Committee in February 2010 after which feedback from the educational community was sought through regional focus groups.  A total of 19 focus groups for school-level leaders (principals and  assistant principals) and 15 focus groups for district-level leaders (superintendents and assistant superintendents) were conducted  across the State to gather feedback on the clarity of the document and to determine its effectiveness in developing the capacity of principals to serve as instructional leaders focused on teaching and learning.  The complete focus group feedback from school-level and district-level leaders along with feedback received from other members of the educational community can be found in Attachment B.  Members of the General Advisory Group met in May to review the feedback, draw generalized conclusions and identify themes related to each of the four focus group questions.  This analysis is provided below.  Please note that minor changes in the wording of questions were made depending on the focus group session participants (school-level or district level leaders).

FOCUS GROUP FEEDBACK

Question #1: 

District-Level Leaders:  Which sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders, provide a framework for meaningful focus, direction and support to you in developing principals in your district as instructional leaders?

School-Level Leaders:  Which sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment for Educational Leaders, provide a clear framework for meaningful focus direction and support for you as an instructional leader?

Overall the responses from participants (principals and superintendents) indicated significant levels of support noting the following elements/features as helpful:

 

 

Question #2:

District-Level Leaders:  Which sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders, need to be clarified or modified in order to provide a framework for meaningful focus, direction and support to you in developing principals in your district as instructional leaders?

School-Level Leaders:  Which sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders, need to be clarified or modified in order to provide a framework for meaningful focus, direction and support for administrators as instructional leaders?

 

 

Question #3: 

District-Level Leaders:  What sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders, would be valuable/effective for your principals to use in evaluating administrators who report directly to them?

School-Level Leaders:  Which sections of the draft document, Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders, would be valuable/effective for you to use for the same evaluative purpose for leaders who report directly to you?

 

 

Question # 4: 

District-Level Leaders: In using the draft document, Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders, as a framework for a locally developed evaluation instrument, what resources and support should be provided to ensure its success?

School-Level Leaders:  Same as above.

 

    

Recommendation

It is recommended that the Board of Regents endorse the Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders including the guiding principles and 5 components (Performance Goals; Student Performance; Feedback from Multiple Sources; Professional Growth; and Personalized Leadership Focus)  to serve as the framework for a statewide Principal Performance Evaluation System and direct the Department  to develop regulatory language with input from the educational community for adoption by the Board of Regents in the fall 2010.


Attachment A

Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders

 

 

The New York State Education Department has embarked upon a comprehensive plan seeking to develop a Cohesive

Leadership System (CLS) by focusing on key leverage points that will prepare and support educational leaders throughout their careers:

 

A working group of principals, superintendents and district-level leaders were asked to address the third element of the CLS and design an educational leader performance evaluation system for recommendation to the department.  NYSED staff assisted in this process, along with an expert consultant** and the project director for the NYSED/Wallace Foundation Grant:  Developing a Cohesive Leadership System in New York State.  At the outset of the group's work, a number of Guiding Principles were identified upon which the performance evaluation will be constructed.  In addition to these principles, a number of important concepts and ideas were discussed and agreed upon. 

The first concept discussed by participants dealt with a strong interest in assuring that the professional assessment system would inform, and be informed by, the other elements of the CLS.  Thus, the system serves, in part, as a tool to identify where and how pre-service leadership preparation programs and professional development initiatives can be improved.    There was also a strong belief that the assessment system should be a team building enterprise whereby the evaluator and educational leader being evaluated form a strong bond focused on important work centered on student learning.  Additionally, the concept of collective efficacy, where all partners in the equation for student success commit to school and personal growth and understand that extraordinary results can be achieved only when  belief  in one another is embraced, should be advanced as the result of the evaluation process.  This would come, in part, by assuring that “lessons learned” are regularly and openly shared.  Lastly, while ISLLC Standards are the prevailing framework, attention to state and local improvement initiatives must be accommodated as well.

*Educational Leadership Policy Standards: ISLLC (Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium) 2008 as adopted by the National Policy Board for Educational Administration on December 12, 2007. http://www.azedfoundation.org/ISLLC%2008.pdf   

** Joseph Murphy,  Frank W. Mayborn Chair, Vanderbilt University 

 

 

The Foundation Should . . .     

 

The System Should . . .

 

The Process Should . . .

 

The Outcomes Should . . .

 

 

Educational leaders will be evaluated annually on basis of the following five components: 

Goals; Student Performance; Feedback from Multiple Sources; Professional Growth; and Personalized Professional Focus.  A description of each component is provided in the chart below.

 

Components

Description

  • Performance Goals

The selection of goals should take into consideration all aspects of a comprehensive school environment and provide a focus linked to established school and District plans designed to increase learning and achievement for all students.

  • Goals should result from collaborative dialogue between the educational leader and his/her supervisor.
  • Goals should be manageable in number.
  • Goals should be specific and measureable.
  • Goals should be prioritized to ensure they address substantive issues identified through a thorough analysis of data.
  • Actions related to goals should be identified and implemented based on a thorough understanding and application of relevant research.
  • Goals should identify targeted growth areas linked to the ISLLC Standards.

 

  • Student Performance

Student performance should be emphasized as a priority.

 

  • Evidence of data analysis should be demonstrated.
  • Evidence of student growth/achievement should be derived from multiple indicators.
  • Evidence of actions taken to address needs identified through data analysis should be demonstrated.
  • Evidence of impact of actions taken on student growth/achievement should be demonstrated.
  • Evidence of student growth/achievement should be based on evidence which answers the following questions:     
  • What is the level of achievement?
  • What is the growth in achievement?
  • What is the equity in achievement across subgroups?
  • Student achievement should be supported by actions tied to ISLLC Standards.

 

  • Feedback from Multiple Sources

Feedback from stakeholders in the educational process provides valuable information related to school improvement initiatives.

 

  • Feedback should be related to ISLLC Standards.
  • Determining what feedback should be collected as well as how, and from whom

(which stakeholders) should be based upon discussion between the educational leader and supervisor.

  • Methods for collecting feedback should be designed to guide the school/district improvement process.
  • Feedback should be used to develop relevant professional development and other support for the educational leader aligned with ISLLC Standards.

 

  • Professional Growth

Professional growth of the educational leader as demonstrated through actions and outcomes that impact student learning and achievement is an important objective of the educational leader evaluation/assessment process.

 

  • Supervisors should provide specific and timely feedback through regularly scheduled meetings and ongoing communication.
  • Evidence of the impact of professional growth efforts should be demonstrated
  • The educational leader should engage in personal and collegial reflective practice that promotes professional growth.
  • The educational leader’s professional development and support should be differentiated based on need.
  • Professional development for the educational leader should be identified through collaborative discussion with his/her supervisor.
  • Professional growth should be tied to ISLLC Standards and built upon New York State’s Professional Development Standards.

 

  • Personalized Leadership Focus

The Educational leader will develop and demonstrate a level of expertise by targeting a single ISLLC Standard and concentrating on one or more of its related functions,

  • The targeted ISLLC Standard and its related functions should be selected by the educational leader and shared with his/her supervisor.
  • The educational leader and his/her supervisor will determine how acquisition of knowledge and skills will be demonstrated.
  • The educational leader should provide evidence demonstrating acquisition, enhancement and application of skills/expertise to his/her supervisor.

 

 

 

 

 

 


SED seal sm.tif

Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders

Focus Group Feedback

from District-Level Leaders

Background

A group of principals selected by School Administrators Association of New York State (SAANYS) and New York State Federation of School Administrators (NYSFSA) worked side by side with a group of superintendents selected by the New York State Council of School Superintendents (NYSCOSS) along with members of the State Education Department staff to develop an evaluation system for New York State principals.  A national expert facilitated the work of this group which led to the development of  the  Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders, one of the major elements  in the NYSED/Wallace Foundation grant:  Developing a Cohesive Leadership System in New York State.    

Focus Groups:  Purpose and Process

The Board of Regents and NYSED are  interested in receiving feedback from practicing principals, superintendents and district-level leaders regarding the draft  Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders before its adoption.  In order to gather this feedback, a series of focus groups were conducted throughout the state.   A number of Statewide professional organizations were also invited to provide feedback.  Results from the focus groups will be used to determine the clarity of the draft Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders and to determine if  it provides a framework for meaningful focus, direction and support in developing principals as instructional leaders.  Feedback from the 15 regional focus group sessions for superintendents (total participation 131) is provided in this document.   Questions were agreed upon by the State associations responsible for conducting the focus group sessions (SAANYS and NYSFSA for principals; NYSCOSS for superintendents).  Trained facilitators conducted the sessions and submitted feedback to their respective State organizations.  Feedback based on each question is provided herein.  Some minor editing took place for purposes of clarity (i.e. questions were re-worded as suggestions) and additional categories were created based on feedback unrelated to the focus group questions.   

Focus Group Process

The facilitator at each focus group followed the same procedures outlined below in order to ensure consistency across the state:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

* The General Advisory Group is comprised of representatives of the following organizations who have provided ". . . general direction, input and feedback to the NYSED on the conceptualization and implementation of each strand of the Cohesive Leadership System."

 

 

Feedback

Question #1: Which sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders provide a framework for meaningful focus, direction and support to you in developing principals in your district as instructional leaders?

 

 

Question #2:  Which sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders need to be clarified or modified in order to provide a framework for  meaningful focus, direction and support to you in developing principals in your district as instructional leaders?

 

 

Question #3:  What sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment for Educational Leaders would be valuable/effective for your principals to use in evaluating administrators who report directly to them?

 

 

 

Question # 4:  In using the draft document, Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders as a framework for a locally developed evaluation instrument, what resources and support should be provided to ensure its success?

 

 

Additional Feedback:  The following  comments did not specifically relate to the focus group questions and thus are included here.  The headings were developed in order to group similar responses.

Design of the System:

 

 

Purpose of the System:

 

Considerations:

Component #3 is weighted 1/5 of evaluation? Not as important as other components. Can local decision re-balance priorities/weighting.                       

 

 

SED seal sm.tif

Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders

Focus Group Feedback

from School-Level Leaders

 

Question #1:  Which sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment for Educational Leaders provide a clear framework for meaningful focus, direction and support for you as an instructional leader?

 

 

Question # 2:  Which sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment for Educational Leaders need to be clarified or modified in order to prove a framework for meaningful focus, directions and support for administrators as instructional leaders?

 

Goals are manageable
Goals are specific
Goals are prioritized based upon substantive issues identified
Actions are based on thorough understanding……
Goals identify targeted areas
Remove the word “should”

 

Section #3-Feedback from multiple sources

Section #4-Professional Growth

Section #5-Personalized Professional Focus

Process – remove all “being evaluated” phrases

Outcomes – remove “being evaluated”

 

 

Question #3:  Which sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment for Educational Leaders would be valuable/effective for you to use for the same evaluative purpose for leaders who report directly to you?

 

 

Question #4:  In using the draft document, Professional Assessment for Educational Leaders as a framework for a locally developed evaluation instrument, what resources and materials would be needed to endure its success?

 

 

Additional thoughts/concerns:

 

 

New York City Department of Education
Superintendent Feedback on Proposed Statewide Evaluation System

May 6, 2010

The NYC Department of Education convened a group of NYC superintendents to provide feedback on the proposed Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders.  A summary of trends is included below.  The actual feedback is included on the following pages.

Summary of Feedback

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contextual and Clarifying Questions/Thoughts

 

Very briefly, what were your initial reactions to/impressions of the proposed statewide professional assessment system?

 

Which sections/portions of the draft document, Professional Assessment for Educational Leaders:

… provide meaningful focus, direction and support for you in developing and evaluating principals in your district as instructional leader?

 

 

… need to be clarified or modified in order to provide meaningful focus, direction and support for you in developing and evaluating principals in your district as instructional leaders?

 

 

Is there anything that you would remove?

 

In using the draft document, Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders as a framework for a locally developed evaluation instrument, what resources and materials should NYSED provide to ensure its success?

 

Based on our discussion and your review of the proposed framework, how would you rank the framework on a scale of 1-5 (1 = very ineffective, 5 = very effective) as they stand today (without any changes)?

 

 

 

letterhead

 

TO:                    Commissioner Steiner, Senior Deputy Commissioner King, Deputy Commissioner Frey

FROM:              Amy McIntosh

CC:                    Robert McClure, John White, Tracy Breslin

DATE:               May 12, 2010

RE:                     New York City Department of Education Feedback on the Proposed Statewide School Leader Evaluation System

Thank you for providing the NYC Department of Education with an opportunity to provide feedback on the proposed statewide Professional Assessment System for Educational Leaders.  We appreciate the desire to create a robust and rigorous statewide evaluation system for school leaders.  We especially appreciate that the framework includes student performance data as a key criterion for principal evaluation, and that this section includes references to absolute performance, growth, and equity.  This is critical in order to ensure that we hold each and every school leader accountable for student achievement and outcomes.  We also applaud the fact that the system would apply to all school administrators and, as such, could strengthen what all school systems do to evaluate both principals and assistant principals.

To further strengthen the proposed framework, we recommend the following: