In discussing ways to improve the evaluation process, Kip Hottman and Angela Baker talk about the importance of connecting a teacher’s evaluation with her professional development. Too often, evaluation happens and then professional development happens, but there’s no real connection between the two.
Hottman and Baker think PAR can help address this challenge.
In the past, growth was viewed as a common thread amongst departments in schools, and most teachers focused on the same goal as their peers. The PAR program is groundbreaking because it is teacher-centered as they have the opportunity to create their own professional growth goal. The teacher is held accountable for his or her goal and provides evidence of change in student achievement through their adopted changes in practice.
Teacher-centered, individualized professional development is the promise — and the reality — of PAR.
As I’ve written before, there are costs associated with PAR — but the investment is well worth it if, as Hottman and Baker suggest, it leads to improved teaching and better student outcomes.
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