East Lyme weighs gradual rollout of its own teacher evaluation plan

East Lyme - The Board of Education will likely approve by mid-April its own teacher evaluation plan that incorporates new state requirements.

But the school district, which has two years to put the plan in place, will partially implement the new teacher evaluation system in 2013-14, according to Superintendent of Schools James Lombardo.

One option the district is exploring is evaluating only one third of the staff under the new system during the first year.

Last June, the state Board of Education had adopted new teacher evaluations standards for implementation in the 2013-14 school year. But Lombardo said the state board is revising the requirements to allow for a two-year roll out of the new system.

Under the new requirements, school districts have the option to follow a specific state pilot model, the System for Educator Evaluation and Development (SEED), or craft their own system that abides by the state's core requirements and develops standards-based guidelines, while allowing some "leeway," Melissa DeLoreto and Karen Twitchell, co-chairwomen of the district's teacher evaluation committee, told the board Monday.

They updated the board on the new system that incorporates observations of teachers as well as student progress based on goals.

Under the systems, teachers are graded as "exemplary," "proficient," "developing" or "below standard," according to the presentation highlighting information from the state Department of Education. The co-chairwomen also outlined the timeline for the evaluation process, which requires teachers to have goal-setting plans in place by mid-November.

DeLoreto said the committee's recommendation is toward implementing the core requirements, rather than the SEED model.

Lombardo said at Monday's meeting he would ask the board to approve a plan for the district at an upcoming meeting. If the board does not implement its own plan, it will follow the state model.

k.drelich@theday.com

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