TCTA was successful in persuading the State Board for Educator Certification to drop language from one of its legislative recommendations to use teacher evaluations as a measure to hold educator preparation programs accountable.

The recommendation being considered by SBEC was “Expand outcome-based accountability for educator preparation programs, including the use of teacher evaluation results for first-year teachers.”

In testimony to SBEC at its recent meeting, TCTA pointed out the pitfalls of using teacher evaluations as a measure, including:

  • that teacher evaluations are rightfully protected as confidential under current law;
  • that there is not consistency across school districts regarding which teacher evaluation system is used, therefore making it inappropriate as an accountability measure; and
  • that it is premature and unwise to specify a particular outcomes-based measure that has not been appropriately vetted and researched.

TCTA’s testimony generated discussion among board members, with some of them pointing out their concerns with turning a tool that is designed to give formative and useful feedback to teachers into an accountability measure. Upon a motion by Suzanne Garcia McCall, SBEC Legislative Chair and TCTA's president-elect, to remove the phrase “including the use of teacher evaluation results for first-year teachers” from the recommendation, the board unanimously voted in support of removing the phrase.

Other legislative recommendations adopted by SBEC were:

  • Expand required reporting of educator misconduct to SBEC to include principals to ensure that alleged misconduct on campuses is adequately reported and investigated. 
  • Establish reciprocity opportunities for educators certified in another state or country to become certified in Texas by demonstrating proficiency on appropriate indicators aligned with the state’s teacher evaluation system.