Teacher Observation, Feedback, and Support in the Time of COVID-19: Guidance for Virtual Learning

One potential policy challenge in the COVID-19 context is how to evaluate and provide teachers feedback and support in a virtual learning environment. State education agencies (SEAs) sought to address this policy challenge by revising teacher evaluation policy during the 2019–20 academic year to lift requirements. However, given the new dynamics for the 2020–21 school year and the increased focus on virtual learning, SEAs are seeking new ways to support teachers with more relevant forms of feedback. This brief provides SEAs with strategies to adapt educator evaluation and support system policies and practices to support virtual learning. The examples, ideas, and resources included herein come from virtual high schools in the United States and from postsecondary education. We explore the standards and rubrics for virtual learning, the logistics for how school leaders can conduct virtual observations, the challenges with observing and providing feedback virtually, and resources for professional learning focused on virtual learning environments.