Educator Performance & Development 

A comprehensive approach to educator performance and development is essential to ensuring that Maine schools have quality teachers and leaders. 

There are many factors that influence the ability of children to thrive in school. As researchers and educators attempt to identify the major influences on children’s learning, one fact remains clear: every child deserves excellent teachers and building principals.   

The implementation of Performance Evaluation and Professional Growth (PEPG) systems places a premium on developing viable processes that identify, maximize, support, and maintain excellence among teachers and principals.  By utilizing multiple measures, educators are evaluated on professional practice and student outcomes with professional growth is at the forefront of these systems. PEPG systems also encourage utilizing data for goals setting, peer feedback, and ongoing reflection to improve teaching practices.   

The Maine DOE offers information and support materials for the implementation and refinement of  PEPG systems.  

Joint Guidance for Performance Evaluation and Professional Growth (PEPG) During 2020-2021 School Year

Through collaborative discussion and mutual agreement, Maine Department of Education, Maine Curriculum Leaders Association, Maine Education Association, Maine Principals Association, Maine School Board Association, Maine School Superintendents Association, and Maine Administrators of Services for Children with Disabilities provide to school administrative units and their PEPG Steering Committee members the following guidance in light of the unprecedented 2020-2021 school year.

Statement: 

During the 2020-2021 school year, educators have adapted their practices in order to best support students.  With shifts among in-person, hybrid, and remote learning models, PEPG systems will look and feel different this year.  Effective PEPG systems are designed to support teachers and leaders in improving professional practice, setting actionable goals, and building on professional strengths, but given the current situation, the primary focus should be on providing feedback and support.   

While PEPG systems remain a requirement in rule and statute, School Administrative Unit (SAU) steering committees are strongly encouraged to seriously consider all ways in which their systems may be responsive to the current context.  Many steering committees have already engaged in such work and others are in the early stages of this process.  As SAUs review their systems, teachers and school leaders must work collaboratively when considering ways to refine and implement procedures in order to focus on what is most essential at this time.   

In response to the pandemic, the Maine DOE facilitated conversation with representatives of some of Maine’s educational organizations (including MPA, MEA, MSSA, MSBA, MADSEC, and MCLA).  The following principles should guide steering committees as revisions are made to PEPG plans in order to address the concerns raised by the organizations.   

Principles:  

  • Awareness of Teacher and Administrator Workload:  We acknowledge that meaningful PEPG systems embed elements into the day-to-day culture of the school.  SAUs should consider the following ways in which to scale back plans as much as possible for this academic year, while maintaining the integrity/intent of the process- teaching and learning-and keeping the focus on feedback and support. SAU steering committees should look at all components of their PEPG systems and make adjustments that prioritize those components that are most facilitative and supportive.    Considerations include, but are not limited to the following elements:   
    • Professional Practice Standards 
    • Student Learning and Growth 
    • Peer Support and Mentoring 
    • Observation  
    • Goal Setting and Reflection  
  • Flexibility at the SAU Level:  We understand that many, even most, elements of PEPG will look different in 2020-2021. SAUs will be given flexibility in implementation for the 2020-2021 school year and committees are encouraged to innovate.  Examples of flexibility include- frequency of mode of instruction, streamlining student learning and growth (SLO), a menu of options for observation, etc. It is important to keep in mind that whatever shape the PEPG system takes for this current situation it must be fair and reasonable as all educators deal with an ever-changing context.  Additionally, the resulting PEPG system should ensure that it be purposeful and useful especially at this time. 
  • Collaborative Decision-making:  The SAU’s steering committee is responsible for the decision-making as it relates to PEPG. SAUs considering changes to PEPG (in response to COVID-19) should ensure that there is representation from a variety of stakeholders.  Consensus is critical in this process.  SAUs should follow their process for making changes to PEPG as outlined in the PEPG plan and include an addendum in their plans that reflect updates in response to COVID-19.  
  • Strong focus on formative feedback, reflection, and growth: Teachers and administrators alike are in the process of learning and adapting their practices.  As a result, formative feedback and support are critical.  Peer support and mentoring, continuous improvement conversations, ongoing reflection, and goal setting are key elements of PEPG that foster growth. In addition, understanding that many educators are on three-year cycles, the primary focus should be on supporting those educators that are probationary or on action plans.    

Resources: 

The following resources were curated to support SAUs.  Additional resources will be available on the Maine Department of Education Educator Effectiveness website.  Steering Committees are encouraged to share resources or promising practices with Emily Doughty at Emily.doughty@maine.gov.  

  • Marshall Model: 
    • The Maine Principal’s Association will be sponsoring a live and on-demand webinar with Kim Marshall on January 7, 2020.  To register for Supervision Via Remote Teaching; How to Shift Our Observation Techniques to Provide the Best Feedback for Teaching and Learning please visit: https://mpaprof.org/event/supervision-via-remote-teaching/
  • The Danielson Framework:  
 

Updates to Educator Effectiveness Law - April 2019

On April 11, 2019, Governor Mills signed a law that makes important changes to Performance  Evaluation and Professional Growth (PEPG) systems. The new law will go into effect 90 days after the current legislative session ends. Chapter 27, An Act to Amend Educator Evaluation Requirements, includes a number of changes.

  1. Under the new law, school administrative units may choose to identify and include student learning and growth measures that they deem valuable in summative effectiveness ratings, but they are no longer required to do so.  This section of the law goes into effect September 1, 2021.  
  2. SAUs must ensure or reconfigure their steering committee membership, such that a majority are teachers who are chosen by a representative of the applicable collective bargaining unit.  This goes into effect on September 19, 2019.  
  3. The law states that, “revisions to the performance evaluation and professional growth system made by the steering committee must be reached by consensus.”

Read Full Administrative Letter

Emily(Gribben) Doughty   
Educator Effectiveness Coordinator
Maine Department of Education 
(207) 624-6748