Embarrassing but true, the above cartoon is not far off from many evaluation experiences.  That is one way it can be done; I propose another, which can be completed with two simple steps:

1) Care.
2) See #1.

Evaluation should be a process driven by collaborative discussion that results in desired growth.  Nobody knows you, like you.  Nobody knows you as an educator, like you.  Nobody knows what you do all day everyday with and for kids, like you.  Thus, you should have an opportunity to make a major contribution to your evaluation.

When the evaluator sincerely cares about his staff, evaluation does not happen on cycle, but is a continuous process driven by on-going discussion and observation.  Collaboration provides the opportunity to sync expectations and goals.  Both parties have a shared focus, and can help one another be accurate with a descriptive working document.  When treated as a process, upon arrival of the evaluation due date, the working document can simply be marked “final”.

Evaluation is opportunity for valuable discussion, relationship building, and trust earning.  It should involve meaningful feedback, result in productive growth, and be craved–by both staff and evaluator.  When the evaluator sincerely cares, it shows.  When it shows, staff and evaluator are better for it.  When staff and evaluator are better for it, kids win.  And that should be the goal of evaluation.


About Sam LeDeaux

Administrator. Teacher. Learner. Coach. Chicago metro area. Passionate about kids, learning, and education. Follow me on twitter @sledeaux84 and at ConnectedPrincipals.com.

2 responses »

  1. I appreciate your focus on relationship building and collaboration in evaluation. In Arkansas we’re implementing a new evaluation system based on Charlotte Danielson’s Frameworks for Teaching. This system has the potential to improve all of our practice as teachers and administrators but my fear is that it will begin to be view as punitive by some. Your approach is what we need to keep at the forefront.


    • sledeaux84 says:

      Good point, principalnotes! Evaluation to complete a rubric has little value for anyone; evaluation to collaboratively grow benefits everyone involved–especially kids! Thanks for the read!


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