Section 5: Be Prepared…for That First Evaluation
Now that you have that first teaching job and are ready to start the school year, what guarantees do you have that you will be asked to return next year? You will be a probationary teacher in most cases for two to three years. You have the same rights as continuing employees when it comes to renewal and non-renewal of your contract. The difference is that you do not have an appeal process, as do continuing employees. You should obtain your district’s written policy and evaluation form. Often these are part of the Master Agreement between your local Association and your district.
- Within these documents, the expectations/standards for evaluation will be outlined and explained. Pay special attention to timelines and procedures. If you have specific questions, ask your mentor. Your relationship with your mentor is confidential. The district cannot ask a mentor questions about your performance for evaluation purposes.
- Find out who the evaluator will be. More than likely it will be the building principal or assistant principal.
- Choose a class and a lesson that will highlight your strengths and provide a lesson plan to the evaluator. First have your mentor or colleague observe you teaching this lesson and ask for feedback.
- The evaluation must be made in writing and discussed with you. The evaluation is based on observations of your instructional skill, classroom management, knowledge of subject matter, and other areas identified by your district. Clarify any negative comments and suggestions for improvement. You must sign the evaluation, acknowledging that it was presented to you. Your signature does not indicate your agreement.
- You have the right to respond in writing to your evaluation. Your response will be included with your evaluation within your personnel file.
- If you have concerns or questions about your evaluation, contact your local Association representative.