Concurrent Sessions I: Implementation Challenges for Teacher Preparation, Development, and Support

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Concurrent Session I.A
"Using Evaluation to Inform Professional Development"


Kansas Educator Evaluation Protocol
Kansas Department of Education

Enhancing Feedback and Professional Growth with Tripod Student Surveys
Ramsdell, Rob
Cambridge Education


Thirty-three states have recently passed teacher evaluation legislation, all with the goal of improving the quality of instruction in our schools. But many educators question how rigorous evaluation translates into stronger teachers and how state education agencies can build successful models in the urgent time frame required. This session explored how evaluation data can be a powerful tool for professional learning, and relayed one state's experiences in creating and piloting an aligned evaluation and professional development system. Following are some highlights:

  • Rob Ramsdell, vice president of Cambridge Education, discussed evidence of students as excellent observers of teaching practice. He provided an overview of Cambridge's Tripod Student Survey , which are teacher, student, and parent surveys of classroom learning conditions and parent-school relationships, and how the data from them can be used in formative and summative evaluations. Student survey data may also be used to inform professional growth plans or development for teachers.
  • Pamela Coleman, director of Teacher Education and Licensure at the Kansas State Department of Education, provided an overview of the Kansas Educator Evaluation Protocol (KEEP) and the process the Kansas Department of Education engaged in to develop this new evaluation system. The system, developed in 2010–2011, engaged all stakeholder groups in the district during the design and development process. As part of this system, educators complete a goal-setting and tracking process, as well as an Individual Growth Plan and Individual Professional Development Plan, based on their evaluation scores.
  • Beverly Mortimer, superintendent of USD 333 Concordia Public Schools in Kansas, discussed her district's pilot of the state's new evaluation system, in which aggregate evaluation data are reviewed to determine strengths and challenges, and teachers receive ongoing professional development and growth plans based on individual evaluation results. The district is also expanding coaching programs to support the evaluation system. Evaluation data will continue to be used to monitor and guide the professional growth of educators in the district as the system is further developed.


Generating Teaching Effectiveness: The Role of Job-Embedded Professional Learning in Teacher Evaluation
Coggshall, J. G., Rasmussen, C., Colton, A., Milton, J., & Jacques, C.
National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality (2012)

Linking Teacher Evaluation to Professional Development: Focusing on Improving Teaching and Learning
Goe, L., Biggers, K., & Croft, A.
National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality (2012)

Toward the Effective Teaching of New College- and Career-Ready Standards: Making Professional Learning Systemic
Coggshall, J. G.
National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality (2012)

Concurrent Session I.B
"Ensuring Teacher Readiness to Implement College- and Career-Ready Standards"


What's Happening in Missouri: Adult performances linked to student outcomes
Katnick, Paul
Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

Ensuring Teacher Readiness to Implement College- and Career- Ready Standards
Poda, Janice
Council of Chief State Schools Officers

Supporting Teachers to Implement the Common Core State Standards
Gottlieb, Dewey
Hawaii Department of Education

Coleman, Pamela
Kansas State Department of Education


Given the ambitious demands and expectations of college and career state standards, it is unlikely that business-as-usual practices will enable teachers to effectively implement these new standards. Initial work in states and districts, based in part on a growing body of research, suggests that leadership, collaboration, and coaching are critical components of any set of plans to ensure teacher readiness and that traditional, one-dimensional, professional development is unlikely to make much of a difference. This session looked at some of the necessary structures and policies that states and districts will need to explore, advocate for, and implement. The session also included a broad national view and descriptions of the specific activities under way in Missouri and Hawaii. Following are some highlights:

  • Presenters agreed that effectively implementing the Common Core State Standards is extremely difficult work and, in many ways, a radical departure from current practice.
  • Steve Leinwand, principal researcher at AIR, argued that technical assistance providers, professional developers, and other education leaders do not currently model the kinds of teaching practices that the Common Core State Standards demand, which may partially explain the challenges in changing teaching practices to meet the necessary demands.
  • Paul Katnik, director of educator development at the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, described Missouri's efforts to build an educator accountability system that holds people across the system accountable—those from preparation programs, school boards, superintendents, principals, and teachers—in ways that build teacher capacity across the career continuum to implement the standards across the system.
  • Dewey Gottlieb, educational specialist at the Hawaii Department of Education, described the department's various efforts to ensure that all teachers in Hawaii become familiar with and eventually internalize the standards, including in-person information sessions for school teams and the development of conversation protocols that school teams can use to bring their knowledge back to their school to share with colleagues.
  • Presenters discussed the value  of teacher practice videos as a powerful way to support teacher learning by helping teachers envision what real changes in their practice would look like. Other approaches that support the improvement of teaching may include task analysis, collaborative planning, coteaching, lesson study, instructional rounds, records of practice, video analysis, learning communities, coaching, and gallery teaching.


Coggshall, J. G.
National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality (2012)

Concurrent Session I.C
"Preparing Tomorrow's Teachers and Leaders"


Preparing Tomorrow's Teachers and Leaders
Holdeheide, Lynn, Ph.D.
American Institutes for Research.


It is difficult to envision a time in which the opportunity and need to transform teacher and leadership preparation are greater. As the Common Core State Standards raise the expectations for students, the need for highly effective teachers grows, and the national movement toward teacher and leader accountability gains traction as better prepared teachers and leaders are essential for implementing school reform. This session highlighted the collaborative process that teacher and leader preparation programs embarked on to transform curriculum, field experiences, and supports to ensure graduates' mastery of the essential competencies needed for successful reform. Following are some highlights:

  • Debra Meibaum, program associate for the Improving School Performance program at SEDL, asserted that existing research on teacher and leader preparation programs highlights the need for reforms to increase program rigor and students' access and exposure to high-quality clinical experience. Teacher and leader preparation programs should align coursework, clinical experience, job placement, and professional oversight to ensure that new professionals are fully prepared to teach and lead in specific contexts. Preparation should also emphasize communication and collaboration skills, including receiving constructive feedback, as well as technology use. Mary Lou Medows, program associate for the Improving School Performance program at SEDL, also emphasized that successful preparation programs should align to teaching and learning standards and use data to evaluate the program.
  • Rick Melmer, dean of the School of Education at the University of South Dakota, described the university's redesign of its teacher education program, which includes stronger connections to K–12 schools and a longer residency for teacher candidates, in which student teachers and mentor teachers use a coteaching model. The program will be tracking candidates after placement, including monitoring value-added scores and comparing the results with other teachers in similar grades and content areas. The data will be used to assess program results and provide targeted assistance to new teachers as needed.
  • Kermit Buckner, professor at East Carolina University, described the university's reforms to its leadership preparation program, including more rigorous admissions standards, stronger K–12 school internships and fieldwork connections, and redesigned coursework aligned to North Carolina leadership standards. The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction will randomly audit student portfolios as one mechanism for holding preparation programs accountable.