Latest News

Hawaii DOE Tweaks Teacher Evaluations Amid Concerns

As part of teachers’ 2013-17 labor contract, the state and teachers union agreed to the annual high-stakes evaluations, but the agreement called for a joint committee of DOE and Hawaii State Teachers Association officials to review the design, validity, reliability and supports for the evaluations and recommend changes to improve its design and implementation.

The joint committee was one of five groups providing feedback on the evaluations, and the DOE says it will be implementing a series of 18 changes for the 2014-15 school year, including:

  • Differentiating the number of required classroom observations based on need from twice annually to zero for highly effective teachers; one or more for effective teachers, and two or more for marginal, unsatisfactory, or beginning teachers. The department said overall this means about 9,000 fewer classroom observations, reducing the observation workload by almost 50 percent.
  • Providing the approximately 1,800 teachers rated highly effective in school year 2013-14 the option to carryover their rating in lieu of repeating the evaluation.
  • Reducing the administration of the student survey from bi-annual to annual, eliminating the survey for grades kindergarten to second, and eliminating the demographic questions from the survey. Overall this means about 11,700 fewer survey administrations, or a 63 percent reduction in administered surveys.