TPEP Statement on Student Growth Percentiles

As many of you are aware, OSPI sent out a memo on March 8th regarding Student Growth Percentiles (SGPs). In the memo, there is a mention of SGPs and teacher evaluations. Both E2SSB 6696 (2010) and ESSB 5895 (2012) call for “multiple measures that can include classroom-based, school-based, district-based, and state-based tools.” Questions abound in this new work around both the “what” and the “how” of these multiple measures. As an education community we must stay committed to developing research-based and researched best practices for how to best use student growth data and many other aspects of the new evaluation systems for teachers and principals.

The TPEP office at OSPI has spent three years studying the issues around student growth and teacher evaluation. We continue to study the implications of student growth and believe that teachers do impact student learning. However, state evaluation systems all over the country are far from conclusive or definitive about how to hold educators accountable for student learning. Washington State is committed to analyzing this issue and coming up with common sense and practical ways teachers and principals can be authentically held accountable for student growth.

In that spirit, OSPI has two specific projects underway that will help shine a light on the issues of student growth.

  1. As part of a grant, OSPI is teaming with the University of Washington to study the impact of the new teacher and principal evaluation on our education system. The following bullets outline the areas we will study over the next three years of the project:
    • Engagement in Professional Learning
    • Focus of Instructional Improvement Strategies
    • Nature of the Evidence Base to Gauge Professional and Student Growth
  2. OSPI has consistently convened practitioners to study and come up with solutions to how to move forward around student growth. We have dedicated numerous days and resources to this work over the past three years. This spring, OSPI is bringing together content experts in 10 different areas to create a first stage of curriculum around the student growth goal setting and outcomes (rubrics) process. This is complex work that will take months and years to perfect in schools, but OSPI and the TPEP steering committee believe that keeping the work as close to the classroom as possible will be essential for our students as we begin the work around student growth in 2013-14, while at the same time experimenting with school, districts, and state-based tools. The pioneering teachers, principals, and district administrators in the pilot and RIGs have not shied away from difficult topics and we must embrace this one too, together.

Finally, through the work of the practitioners involved in the TPEP work (and other initiatives), OSPI will be releasing a module related to student growth in educator evaluation by late spring (Goal Date of May 1st, 2013). Keep checking our website for the ongoing release of the modules.

While SGPs may get lots of the political attention, please keep the complexity of the work at the forefront of these conversations. The new educator evaluation must be implemented with intentionality and thoughtfulness for our state to see a real impact on student learning.

Please feel free to email us with any questions or concerns you may have.

Michaela Miller
Michaela.miller@k12.wa.us

Jim Koval
Jim.koval@k12.wa.us