OTES Update: HB 64 and Frequency of Teacher Evaluations

From the Desk of Dr. Michelle Muro:

Ohio House Bill 64 provides recent changes to Ohio’s Teacher Evaluation System (OTES) which are in effect beginning September 2015. Some of these changes such as the use of value added data in Safe Harbor, will not affect music educators. The Safe Harbor mandate only pertains to data from state tests which does not involve music educators. Fortunately, the development of Music SLOs will remain the same. Below you will find additional information regarding the frequency of teacher evaluations.

clipboard with pen in hand

The Frequency Rules for skilled and accomplished teachers have been misunderstood. Some teachers assume that an accomplished or skilled rating excuses them from doing and SLO. ODE states, “The majority of teachers on the less frequent [evaluation] cycle must have a student growth measure (SGM) in the year they are not fully evaluated.” This means that skilled and accomplished teachers must write an SLO even though they will not be formally evaluated. While SLO data will not be incorporated in the off year cycle, the SLO process must be completed by all teachers as required by their district. (Districts can opt to base evaluations solely on teacher performance). In addition, annual observations are still expected during the off year. Documenting evidence of student growth is imperative, plus it provides a safe guard for teachers. Therefore, “Most teachers who are not required to have evaluations annually must have a rating for student growth measures and must maintain a rating of average of higher each year to continue on the less frequent evaluation cycle” (ODE). Here’s where some of the confusion stems. “There is one exception to this requirement. Districts that had board policies in place before May 10, 2014, regarding less frequent evaluations of accomplished teachers are NOT required to have student growth measures for the accomplished teachers” (ODE). The link below provides detailed information regarding requirements for the less frequent evaluation cycle.

Teachers Rated Accomplished and Skilled (8-19-2015): Click Here

In conclusion, earning a rating of accomplished after May 2014 does not exclude a teacher from annual SLOs or observations. Accomplished and skilled ratings mean less frequent formal evaluations. ALL teachers are required to write SLOs every year unless otherwise specified by your district.

For more information, please access the ODE website and search Student Growth Measures (SGM) by CLICKING HERE.

or visit the OMEA OTES page for up-to-date information by CLICKING HERE.

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