State Board of Education Adopts Revised Evaluation Policy for Educators

May 18, 1999

The West Virginia Board of Education today passed a revised performance evaluation policy for school personnel that focuses on improving instruction and augmenting student performance. At a special meeting held via conference call, state board members unanimously approved Policy 5310 which had been on public comment since January.  

Policy 5310 was first passed in 1985 and was amended in 1992. Last year the state board directed a committee of educators to review and revise the policy. Major changes include a new rating system, performance criteria that focus on improving instruction, the redesign of the professional growth and development plan, and the addition of components for professional growth for support personnel and athletic coaches.  

"This new evaluation policy provides a great vehicle for effective personnel evaluation and allows for the recognition of quality teachers and administrators," said State Board President Jim MacCallum of Boone County. "Further, the revised policy encourages educators to set high expectations and to communicate effectively with parents."  

Educators will now be rated as "exemplary," "exceeds standards," "meets standards" and "unsatisfactory." Previously, only "satisfactory" and "unsatisfactory" were used in the evaluation process. The policy also delineates indicators for the exemplary and exceeds standards categories. Employees with zero to two years experience will receive a minimum of two written evaluations per year. Three to six year employees will receive a minimum of one written evaluation annually; and for employees beginning their seventh year, a professional growth and development plan may be used in lieu of the performance evaluation. The plan must contain goals and objectives and be mutually agreed upon by the employee and supervisor.  

When an educator receives an unsatisfactory rating in any area of teaching responsibility, an improvement plan must be developed to designate how the employee will meet the criteria. The plan must specify corrective action, contain a time frame for meeting criteria, and describe the resources and assistance available to the educator.  

An evaluation process for support personnel was also included in the policy affecting school employees such as athletic trainers, counselors, audiologists, nurses, psychologists, attendance directors and speech language pathologists.  

To successfully implement the policy and ensure that quality evaluations occur, it will be phased in over a two-year period.  

"Both the State Department of Education and the Center for Professional Development will provide education and training in the new process," said State Superintendent Dr. Henry Marockie. "Any individual in a supervisory position will receive training in conducting observations and conferences, completing evaluations and writing and monitoring improvement plans."

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Policy 5310