The Framework for Teaching, created by Charlotte Danielson, is a comprehensive and coherent framework that identifies those aspects of a teacher’s responsibilities that have been documented through empirical studies and theoretical research as promoting improved student learning. The Framework for Teaching is a validated” instrument; that is, studies have shown that teachers who receive higher ratings on their evaluation produce greater gains in student test scores.
The Framework for Teaching is one of the instructional frameworks approved by OSPI for use in Washington State’s pilot programs in teacher evaluation. But there is a long history of its use in the state; it already serves (either in its original form or with slight modifications) as the foundation of mentoring, professional development, and evaluation systems in numerous school districts, including some of the largest. The components of the framework are aligned with Washington State’s teacher evaluation criteria, making it well suited to the current initiative. Furthermore, the framework for teaching is one of the observation protocols used in the Gates Foundation-funded study of teaching, called Measures of Effective Teaching, or MET.
The Danielson Group, founded by Charlotte Danielson, is the only cadre of consultants trained and authorized to lead educators in designing and implementing teacher evaluation systems, and training evaluators to make accurate and consistent judgments based on evidence. The training of evaluators is the linchpin of a defensible evaluation system, particularly one used for making high-stakes personnel decisions. In addition, the training program serves as excellent professional development for teachers, teacher leaders, mentors and coaches, enabling all those activities to be unified into a coherent system.
The foundation of the Framework for Teaching is provided in “Enhancing Professional Practice: A framework for teaching” published by ASCD in 2007. “The Handbook for Implementing the Framework for Teaching” (ASCD, 2008) offers practitioners the tools they need to successfully use the framework for teaching in different contexts.
Implementing the Framework for Teaching in Enhancing Professional Practice: An ASCD Action Tool (2009), by Charlotte Danielson and members of the Danielson Group, provides detailed and specific suggestions for teacher practice for each of the components of the Framework for Teaching at both the proficient and distinguished levels of performance.
An evaluator training program and proficiency test is available through Teachscape, along with other online tools to implement the framework for teaching for both formative and summative teacher assessment. Educational Impact offers several self-paced online courses describing the framework for teaching.