Chapter 3SUPERVISION OF INSTRUCTIONCheryl F. FischerThrough the effective supervision of instruction, administrators can reinforceand enhance teaching practices that will contribute to improved studentlearning. By skillfully analyzing performance and appropriate data,administrators can provide meaningful feedback and direction to teachers thatcan have a profound effect on the learning that occurs in each classroom.Because student learning is the primary function of the schools, the effectivesupervision of instruction is one of the most critical functions of theadministrator. If schools are to provide equal access to quality educationalprograms for all students, administrators must hold teachers accountable forproviding an appropriate and well-planned program. These programs includea variety of teaching strategies designed to meet the diverse needs of allstudents in our complex society.This reviews areas of focus for teacher evaluation, the components ofeffective teaching, some basic strategies and procedures for data gatheringand conferencing, and steps administrators should consider in the effectivepreparation of conference memorandums and letters of reprimand.Approaches that are discussed which differ from existing procedures in thedistrict should be used to stimulate discussion and prompt a review of currentpractices. This process may lead to a restructuring of practices andprocedures that could result in the enhancement of student learning.Teacher EvaluationTo enhance the professional effectiveness of the teaching staff administratorsmust be skilled in these areas: (a) what to evaluate, (b) how to observe andanalyze classroom observation information and other data, and (c) how totranslate the results of observations and the summary of data into meaningfulconference feedback that guides and encourages teachers to improveinstruction. Expectancies for teacher performance were listed in the checklist,what we called CB-PAST. This checklist requires the rate to rate his/herselfaccording to the strands of competencies listed in seven domains. ofcertificated employee competency are required in four areas. These include:(1) the progress of pupils toward the district-adopted standards, (2) the
instructional strategies and techniques utilized by the teacher, (3) theteachers adherence to curricular objectives, and (4) the establishment andmaintenance of a suitable learning environment. Although this code sectionprohibits the evaluation and assessment of certificated employee competenceby the use of published norms established by standardized tests, it does givethe board of education of each district authority to adopt additional evaluationguidelines and criteria. In addition, the school board in each district is requiredto establish and define job responsibilities of other certificatednon-instructional personnel (supervision or administrative positions) whoseresponsibilities cannot be evaluated in the aforementioned four areas.The ability to assess teacher competence in California in the four areasoutlined in SB 813 is a critical factor in achieving educational excellence and apositive learning experience for all students. In the following sections,methods that can be used to assess the competency of teachers in each ofthe four areas will be addressed.Assessing Pupil ProgressTo assess student progress toward the established district standards and tofacilitate the planning of various types of instruction, administration shouldensure that teachers are utilizing information from a variety of valid andappropriate sources before they begin planning lessons or teaching. Thiscould include data regarding students backgrounds, academic levels, andinterests, as well as other data from student records to ascertain academicneeds and to facilitate planning appropriate initial learning. It is important forthe administration to note that information regarding students and theirfamilies is used by the staff for professional purposes only and is keptconfidential as a matter of professional ethics.Administrators should determine if teachers are using the numerous formativeand summative diagnostic processes available to assist in planningmeaningful instruction. Formative measures include ongoing teachermonitoring of student progress during the lessons, practice sessions, and ondaily assignments. Measures administered periodically like criterion-referenced tests, grade level examinations, or placement tests that areteacher-made or part of district-adopted material, also provide helpfulinformation on the status of student learning as instruction progresses.Summative measures like minimum competency examinations, districtmastery tests, the California Assessment Program examinations, and
standardized tests provide a different perspective from the ongoing formativemeasures. This type of data enables the teacher to evaluate the long-termretention rate of their students and to compare student learning on a regional,state, or national basis.The administrators should verify that teachers are preparing and maintainingadequate and accurate records of student progress. This will include theregular and systematic recording of meaningful data regarding studentprogress on specific concepts and skills related to the standards for eachsubject for the grade level or course they are teaching. Once studentssuccess levels have been identified from the records, the teacher should usethe information to plan instruction and any necessary remediation andenrichment. By utilizing ongoing information on achievement, teachers canmaintain consistent and challenging expectations for all students. Studentsand parents should be informed of the students progress toward achievingdistrict goals andobjectives through comments on individual work, progress reports,conferencing, report cards, and other measures. Students should beencouraged to participate in self-assessment as a way of motivating studentsto improve academic achievement.Instructional StrategiesWhen a profession deals with people, cause-and-effect relationships arenever identified as certainties, only as possibilities. Therefore, there are nocertainties in teaching. It is a situational process requiring constant decision-making which, when properly implemented, increases the probability oflearning. Research on teacher effectiveness has been intensified in the lasttwo decades. The results have helped identify an instructional process thatprovides a solid and basic framework for planning instruction which is helpfulin guiding the administrator in what to look for when visiting a classroom.These steps include planning, preparing, presenting the lesson, monitoringstudent progress, and conducting practice sessions.Planning the LessonFormulating a well-defined objective of the lesson is a critical first step as itprovides the direction and framework for the decisions which will follow. Theobjective should describe the specific content to be learned and theobservable behavior the student will exhibit to demonstrate that learning hasoccurred. No matter how expertly the objectives are stated, objectives
facilitate learning only if they are appropriate to the academic achievement ofstudents. A well-written objective includes specific information on what is to beincluded in the lesson and what is not. This specifically expedites the nextstep, which is the identification of sub-skills or sub-objectives. A task analysisof each of the sub-objectives enables the teacher to sequence them in orderof difficulty to provide a logical sequence to the lesson.Preparing the LessonAdministrators will know if the appropriate planning for instruction has takenplace when the teacher is able to design a lesson that achieves the objective.This means everything the teacher and students do during the lesson isrelated to the objective. Birdwalking is a term coined by Madeline Hunter thatrefers to the inability of a teacher to focus on the objective of the lesson(Gentile, 1987). Instead, the teacher birdwalks, pecking at interesting ideaswith what seems to be worthwhile or informative digressions, distracting thestudents thinking processes and leaving the students confused about thetopic of the lesson. Avoiding birdwalking does not mean there can never bespontaneity. The decision to adjust a lesson must be a conscious one wherethe advantage of postponing or interrupting the lesson is weighed against thedisadvantage of interrupting the logic of the lesson (Gentile, 1987).Presenting the LessonThe beginning of each lesson provides the challenge of how to change thefocus of students attention from previous classes or discussions with friendsto the objective of the lesson. The importance of eliciting appropriateassociations prior to presenting a lesson can be found in research on positivetransfer and advanced organizers (Ausubel, 1960; Bransford & Johnson,1972; Emmer & Evertson, 1979).Research indicates that the learning of facts is greatly facilitated whenmemories of organized principles and prerequisite concepts related to thelesson are reviewed at the beginning of the lesson. The focus portion, oranticipatory set as it is called by Madeline Hunter, requires the student overtlyor covertly have the prerequisites in memory. The activity must be designedeffectively to elicit information related to the lesson objective.During the opening it is important for students to know the direction of theinstruction, the relevance of what they are learning, and to have a sense ofcontinuity. Students are often not able to see the relationship between todays
work and the work from yesterday. Sharing the objective of the lessoninformally with students would include teacher statements such as "what weare going to do today" and "the reason we are studying this concept."The body of the lesson includes the presentation of information; whatRosenshine (1986) would call theexplanation-demonstration stage of the lesson. To implement this phase ofthe lesson, administrators should note that teachers have a wide variety ofdifferent styles and models of teaching from which to choose. The larger thenumber of alternative teaching styles teachers are comfortable utilizing, themore likely they will select techniques that match the desired objectives,learning styles, and academic levels of their students. Publications thatdescribe a wide variety of models of teaching include Joyce and Weil (1986)and Bellon, Bellon, and Handler (1977). Other authors have describedspecialized models like cooperative learning (Johnson & Johnson, 1975) andEthna Reids ERIC model. Current literature is in agreement that there isno single right way of teaching or one approach that will be effective for alllearning objectives. To determine if the best teaching strategy was selectedadministrators should determine if the teacher achieved the objective.While well over a hundred instructional strategies have been identified, thereare some attributes common to all strategies (Joyce & Weil, 1986). Classroomobservers should be aware that each strategy has a set of activities with adistinct purpose and role for the teacher and students. Each strategy has alogical sequence which is necessary if students are to accomplish theobjective of the lesson. Therefore, the selection of an instructional strategy isa complex task because there are numerous effective strategies that could beused, depending on the instructional goal. Joyce and Weil (1986) drew from awide range of teaching studies to organize the methods of instruction into fourmajor categories which they refer to as families of instruction.Based upon research in education and psychology, the four familiescategorize strategies according to the intended learning outcomes.The families include information processing, personal, social interaction, andbehavioral. The information processing family promotes a discovery processof learning. Methods included in this family stress thinking kills and thecontent and process of learning. There is no single right answer. Motivationcomes from the natural curiosity of the students. Models in the informationprocessing family are based upon the findings of Bruner, Piaget, Taba,Suchman, and others. Some examples of teaching styles that promote
information processing are inquiry, concept attainment, and advancedorganizers.The personal family, derived from the work of Rogers, Perls, Gordon, and A.S.Neill, emphasizes individual student development and problem-solvingtechniques. In this model the teacher assists the students in developinginterpersonal and cognitive skills and creativity. It enables the students todetermine and evaluate their own learning. Some examples from this familyinclude non-directive teaching, synectics, and the classroom meetings.The work of Dewey, Thelen, Staffel, Glasser, and others is the basis formodels in the social interaction family. The focus is on group problem-solvingskills and the relationship of the individual to society or other people. Selectinga model of instruction from this family is appropriate when the goal of thelesson is to teach group process and academic skills. Examples includevarious forms of cooperative learning and role-playing.The behavioral family emphasizes convergent thinking and a linear learningprocess where learning is broken down into small, sequenced behaviors withfrequent rewards for correct responses. This family includes the work ofSkinner, Bandura, Gagne, Walper, and others who share an emphasis onchanging the behavior of the learner. It is an appropriate method of instructionwhen the objective of the lesson is to teach facts, concepts, or skills.Examples of teaching strategies included in this family are direct instructionand contingency management.An ability to utilize several models in each of the four families enablesteachers to review the needs of the students and the objectives of the lesson,and select the particular approach that is most likely to facilitate achievementof the learning objective. Classroom observers should understand that thefour families provide a valuable source of information for staff developmenttraining sessions.Monitoring Student ProgressIt is clear that good teaching requires diagnosing student progress during thelesson and adjusting instruction accordingly (Good, 1983; Rosenshine &Stevens, 1986; Hunter, 1982). Periodic and formal assessments of studentlearning through a mid-term or final examination may be helpful in formulatinggrades, but are not frequent enough to enable the teacher to adjust theteaching to correct for misconceptions. When observing a lesson,
administrators should note points in the lesson where teachers should monitorinstruction as it progresses to enable them to immediately respond tostudents misunderstandings and insure that all students are learning thematerial. Checking for understanding can be done in large groups by havingall of the students signal the response at the same time to the same question.This can be done with the use of their fingers to signal multiple choiceanswers 1, 2, or 3, the first letter of a word, or thumbs up or down to indicatetrue or false (Hunter, 1982). Other techniques for group signaling include theuse of individual chalkboards, ceramic tiles, or laminated cards on whichstudents record their responses with a grease pencil or crayon and flash theanswer. A group choral response can also be used. Students understandingcan also be checked through the use of brief written responses, or mini-diagnostic tests. As students are completing the quick quiz the teacher walksaround the room monitoring the approach the students are using to solve theproblems as well as their answers, and determines if adjustment in teachingneeds to be made. Another method would be a pair share where studentstake turns telling each other the answers to two different questions related tothe same objective while the teacher monitors. Although some measures maynot indicate specifically which students are confused, they do provide theteacher with the information needed to determine if the direction or pace of thelesson needs to be adjusted.Teachers who monitor progress as part of their teaching have all studentsperform some observable behavior congruent with the objective of the lessonwhile they check the behavior. They analyze the correctness andcompleteness of the responses and determine if it is necessary to reteachcertain segments of the lesson before they move on. Once this is completedthey proceed to the next concept--teaching, re-teaching if necessary, andproviding the necessary practice.Conducting Practice SessionsOnce students have an adequate level of understanding, research concludesthat it is extremely important that students be given the opportunity to practicethe new skill and its application (Russell & Hunter, 1977). In the initial phase,practice should be conducted under the direct supervision of the teacher.Hunter refers to the process as guided practice. The teacher moves about theroom providing support, encouragement, praise, individual assistance, and re-teaching. It can be particularly effective during this portion of the lesson if theteacher utilizes cooperative learning groups or heterogeneous groupingstrategies to form practice groups. This provides an opportunity for peer-
tutoring while the teacher circulates among the groups and keeps them ontask while monitoring their level of understanding.It is important to remember that individuals are only able to assimilate acertain amount of information before it needs to be organized. Otherwise, newlearning interferes with the old and produces confusion. For longer or morecomplicated lessons it may be critical to stop and get closure at several pointsthroughout the lesson as well as at the end. Students who actively participatein the process are able to reorganize the material and achieve greaterretention and clarity of the information.Prior to allowing students time for independent practice, the use of summaryor review statements helps students put the information into perspective andidentify the key points. It is also helpful if the teacher identifies how it willrelate to the lesson planned for the following day. Providing closure, at anypoint in the lesson, provides students with the opportunity to consolidate andorganize what they have learned.After providing adequate explanation and practice in a monitored setting,students should be provided the opportunity to practice the new skillindependently. To insure that this practice session is positive and productive,the material must relate directly to the lesson just mastered.Adherence to Curricular ObjectivesThe third area supervisors are required to evaluate and assess is theteachers ability to adhere to curricular objectives. To comply with thisrequirement of SB 813, administrators should assure that teachers areutilizing state frameworks, district curriculum guides, scope and sequencecharts, and course outlines to assist them in planning instruction. Lessonplans should have a clearly defined objective that is appropriate to the classlearning level and consistent with established district, school, department, orgrade level curriculum standards for expected achievement. Further, plansshould incorporate the needs, interests, and special talents of students in theclass and include enrichment or acceleration activities for students whocomplete basic tasks early. Activities in the lesson should revolve around theacquisition of new learning.Planning should include a time line so the teacher can monitor the pace ofinstruction to insure that the intended curricular objectives are taught andmastered in the allocated time. Administrators should verify that a variety of
ongoing assessment measures are being utilized by the teacher to monitorachievement of intended objectives. Information from these measures shouldbe used to make adjustments to the pace, objectives, or sequence whennecessary. Teachers should utilize district-adopted materials and appropriatesupplemental materials to meet individual students academic needs andlearning styles.Teachers should be encouraged by administrators to participate inrecommending texts and supplementary materials and developing curriculumso they can utilize their knowledge of students skills, needs, and interests inselecting a product that will more closely meet the needs of students in theschool or grade level.Suitable Learning EnvironmentThe fourth and final requirement of SB 813 is that evaluators verify thatteachers establish and maintain a suitable learning environment. Therefore,each teacher should develop and implement clear classroom routines andappropriate standards at the beginning of each school year to insure thehealth, safety, and welfare of their students. This includes maintaining a clean,safe, and orderly learning environment that includes establishment of goodwork habits and discipline. Teachers should post and communicate theclassroom standards and procedures as well as the consequences formisbehavior with students and their parents. Students should show evidenceof respect for the rules in the classroom and on the campus. Teachers shouldstrive to be fair, firm, and consistent as they maintain effective student controlin the classroom and uphold the rules throughout the school. Teachers shouldrefer students to support staff when necessary to maintain the appropriatelearning environment.Administrators should ensure that appropriate behavior is supported withregular and ongoing recognition and reinforcement activities. Mutual respectamong pupils, teachers, and staff should be evident on campus and inclassrooms. Everyone should work together cooperatively, communicate withsensitivity, and utilize appropriate language. Administrators and teachersshould serve as role models for students in developing self-control, a sense ofresponsibility, and attitudes of tolerance and sensitivity.Emergency procedures should be reviewed with students and practicedregularly. In addition, administrators should verify that materials and supplies
that will be needed in an emergency, including exit routes and studentinformation, are readily available.Teachers should adjust the heating, lighting, and ventilation to promotecomfort. The classroom arrangement should make good use of space, fostergood study habits, and enable students to see and hear instruction. Theclassroom should have attractive and appropriate visuals and decorations thatdo not distract from learning.Good home-school relationships help create a positive learning environmentand can be enhanced by regular communication. This can include informationon what is to be taught as well as the methods and materials that will be usedto achieve the objectives. Evaluators should check to see that systems havebeen established to communicate with parents on a regular basis regardingstudent progress. Parents should have opportunities for classroom visitationsas well as parent conferences. Teachers should make every effort to promptlyreturn parents phone calls.Supervision StrategiesSupervision of instruction must be built on the observers thoroughunderstanding and in-depth knowledge of instructional theory, not on a checklist of what should be in a lesson.Gathering DataThree main sources of information help identify a teachers competency on thefour SB 813 criteria. They include: observations, interviews, and documents.Observations should include walk-throughs conducted on at least a weeklybasis. These brief visits, lasting only a minute or two, provide a quick look atteacher performance and classroom environmental factors. Walk-throughs arehelpful in identifying ongoing patterns of behavior. An informal observation isan unannounced visit lasting more than 10 minutes during which the teachersbehaviors or classroom factors may be observed to document consistenttrends or patterns of behavior. The informal observation can be followed by awritten summary or conference with the teacher.A formal observation is an announced visit lasting an agreed-upon amount oftime. During the observation, the administrator records what was said by theteacher and the students. The formal observation also includes a pre- and
post-conference and a written summary. The summary includes a descriptionof the conference, observation, observers judgments, and agreements ordirections for changes in teacher behaviors, activities, or classroomenvironment. A peer observation is agreed upon by the teacher and peer andcan be used to verify a trend or pattern of behavior perceived by theevaluator.Interviews are also a helpful source of obtaining information. They can includediscussions with students to verify perceptions. At times, parents request aconference to discuss their perceptions. In addition, other members of theadministrative team or classified employees who are assigned to work in theclassroom can be interviewed to provide their perceptions.The review of various types of documents can be helpful in identifying trendsor behaviors. These include written parent and student letters or complaintforms. Individual pieces of students work, folders, or portfolio assessmentswhich contain a number of samples of students work also provide helpfulinformation on their achievement. Documents should include both formative(ongoing assessment measures) and summative measures (culminatingassessment) including homework, practice exercises completed in class,examinations, and student projects.Reviewing student work on district developed criterion-referenced tests is alsohelpful. An analysis of the lesson plans in respect to required orrecommended district curriculum requirements or course outlines is alsobeneficial.Teacher ConferencingConferences throughout the year provide a means to communicate theevaluation of the teachers performance. Decisions shared during theconference are based upon the data collected through observations, review ofdocuments, and interviews that relate to the assessment and evaluation of theteachers ability to meet the requirements of SB 813 as adopted by the localdistrict governing board. The conference should provide the teacher with themeans to change unsatisfactory behavior or options for enhancement ofperformance. The conference should provide an opportunity to expand theteachers knowledge and concepts and reinforce his or her understanding ofthe missions of the school. The pre-conference is held before a formalobservation and provides the administrator with the opportunity to obtain asmuch information about the upcoming observation as possible.
Post-conferences can be collaborative, guided, or directive in nature. Eachtype of conference is planned by the supervising administrator to achieve adifferent goal. A collaborative conference is effective when the teacher is ableto identify problem areas, suggest alternatives, develop a plan, and is readyand willing to grow professionally, needing little support. This conference isdesigned to conclude with mutually determined follow-up activities that willenhance the teachers capabilities. The conference begins with the teacherpresenting an overview and analysis of the lesson that was observed. Theteacher identifies the strengths and weaknesses of the lesson while theadministrator listens to the teachers perceptions. The administrator thenverifies the teachers perceptions and offers his or her own opinions. After thismutual exchange, possible activities for the next steps are discussed and theconference concludes with agreement on a final plan.A guided conference is effective for teachers who have difficulty identifyingproblem areas and alternatives to current practices and need support to carryout the action plan. In addition, the guided conference is effective with ateacher who has little or no difficulty identifying areas that need improvementbut is unwilling or not committed to making the necessary changes. During aguided conference it is important that the principal provides prompts toencourage the teachers thinking, to allow the teacher freedom to explorevarious possibilities, and to enable the teacher to make a commitment.During the guided conference the teacher is encouraged to describe thelesson observed. The administrator probes for further information andpossible plans for growth and time frames. The administrator paraphrases hisor her understanding of the teachers messages and asks for clarificationwhen necessary. At the culmination of the guided conference the teacherrestates the criteria for action and the time frame.A directive conference is effective for teachers who cannot identify problemareas, require a great deal of support, and are unwilling or unable to change.In conducting the directive conference the administrator identifies theproblems and allows the teacher to provide input. The administrator sharesthe details of a plan for support and assistance that is designed to enable theteacher to meet the desired expectations. Following the conference theadministrator directs and monitors the follow-up activities. It is theadministrators responsibility to provide support, monitor the time lineactivities, and to evaluate the degree of effectiveness resulting from theassistance.
During each conference it is important to stay on the topic and focus on thedata and documentation regarding the lessons observed. If the data collectedclearly indicate a change must occur to increase student learning, a directivefor change is appropriate. Some administrators find this type of conferencedifficult. It is important to avoid compromising statements that provide anexcuse for poor performance like, "I know this is asking a lot since its yourfirst year in advanced science," or "You shouldnt be concerned that thelesson didnt go well, it happens to everyone." When teachers make threats orcaustic statements, the administrator must remember that teachers who usethis strategy are often diverting attention from the task at hand. It is importantto avoid this diversion and remain on task.At the close of a collaborative, guided, or directive conference there should bean agreed-upon or directed statement clearly outlining the changes expectedin the undesirable patterns of behavior, and where appropriate, the specificprofessional growth activities that will be utilized to achieve the desiredchanges. The statement should include the support and assistance,monitoring process, time lines for skill transfer, observable changes, andwhich data will be reviewed. When preparing the statement it is important toselect several changes that will have the greatest effect on students learning.Once the focus is established it is important to consider what is reasonable toachieve in the given time frame. The administrator who will monitorand conduct the review should consider all data needed to document whetherthe desired changes have taken place.Planning the ConferenceIn preparation for the conference, the administrator will need to review thedata and identify the strengths and areas of concern. The administrator shouldselect only one or two behavioral changes and the professional growth activityor activities that will have the greatest effect on the learning for the largestnumber of students. These selected areas will be the focus or objective of theconference. It will be necessary to identify specific aspects of the datacollected that support the need for growth in these areas. It is helpful toformulate questions before the conference that will help the teacher focus onthese issues or clarify aspects of the lesson for the administrator. Theadministrator should identify possible resources and personnel that couldassist in a follow-up plan prior to the conference. The recommendationsconsidered should be doable and reasonable based on the teachersreadiness and the time available. The administrator should select the type of
conference collaborative, guided, or directive) and prepare a conferenceoutline. A good conference should last 30-40 minutes. Longer sessionsbecome an ordeal for both the teacher and the administrator. It is theadministrators responsibility to have his or her thoughts well-organized and tokeep the conference on task so it can be completed in a timely manner.During the conference the teacher and/or administrator should cite purpose,strengths, and areas of concern with reference to supporting data. A follow-upplan with the desired specific outcome, activities, and a summary of decisionsshould be developed.The evaluation conference should be held at the close of the evaluation periodor at the end of the year. The purpose of the conference is to communicatethe teachers rating based upon the SB 813 performance criteria adopted bythe district and should include any commendations for exemplaryperformance. Additionally, the conference should provide an opportunity toexpand the teachers thinking and develop means to strengthen performance.The conference provides yet another forum to communicate and clarify theschools missions, goals, and values. The administrator prepares for theevaluation conference in much the same manner as other conferences. Theadministrator should review all of the data collected to-date, includingconference memoranda and data prepared during the evaluation period. He orshe should determine the teachers ratings,commendations, and recommendations, then prepare the evaluation forms. Inaddition, the administrator should identify the objectives that will have thegreatest effect on student learning, recommendations for improvement,methods of improvement and support, and a reasonable time line. Theadministrator should select the type of conference (collaborative, guided, ordirective) and formulate questions that help guide the staff to review specificareas of performance.The teacher and administrator should develop plans for enhancement orimprovement. Following the conference the administrator should prepare alegally sound evaluation conference memorandum following the formatsuggested in the next section. Summative evaluation written documentation isrequired by law and must be delivered in person to the teacher no later thanthirty days prior to the end of the school year.Memorandum and Letters of Reprimand
In education, a memorandum is often defined as any written material given toa teacher regarding his or her performance or conduct. There are a widevariety of administrative correspondence that qualify as memoranda. Theseinclude observation checklists, letters regarding an observation or conference,and letters summarizing a conference. To insure that the desired results areachieved it is important that memoranda be legally sound. Memorandum, aswell as letters of reprimand, must be written in a timely manner, shouldinclude a reference date, and state specific facts. These can include the date,time, place, and names of others who were present and/or witnesses of theactions of the staff member being evaluated or reprimanded. These actionsshould be described in an explicitly factual and objective manner usingsensory facts (what was seen, heard, touched, tasted, or smelled). Subjectiveopinions, conclusions, or educational jargon should be avoided. Theconsequences of the performance or action on students, teachers, classifiedstaff, administrators, or the work unit, should be described.Extenuating or enhancing circumstances surrounding the performance shouldalso be noted, as well as the teachers reasons or motives for the action if theywere expressed. The appropriate and related teaching certificates of the staffmember should be referenced as well as related staff development efforts.Letters which cite unsatisfactory behavior should reference the contractprovision, rules, regulations, students rights, guidelines, and curriculumguides that were upheld or violated. Previous oral or written commendationsor reprimands or warnings, including compliments or complaints from studentsor parents that are related to the actions described in the memo, should benoted. Efforts related to this area that have been made in the past toassist the staff member and the employers reactions to these efforts (positiveand negative) should be teviewed. The author should state his or her beliefregarding the likelihood of recurrence. If it is a letter of reprimand; it must bespecifically stated. If this is the case, the letter should indicate that the staffmember is being given another opportunity to improve their performance withthe hope they will be successful. The letter should state that if the staffmember does not improve, further disciplinary action will follow, although thespecific action should not be noted. On both the memorandum and letter ofreprimand it must indicate that the staff member has the right to respond. Theletter should be handed, not mailed, to the employee with a copyforwarded to the personnel office for inclusion in the staff members personnelfile.Staff Development
The quality of student learning is directly related to the quality of classroominstruction. Therefore, one of the most important aspects of instructionalleadership is to provide the necessary climate to promote ongoinginstructional improvement. To accomplish this, the instructional supervisormust be able to plan and deliver effective staff development programs. Theleadership needs to insure that staff development efforts have the appropriatefinancial resources; adequate time set aside to plan, conduct, and implementthe programs; and time for staff to practice the new skills. Further, teachersneed the verbal support and physical attendance at sessions by thesupervisors to verify their commitment. Teachers should be involved in theidentification of their own staff development needs. They must be involved inthe planning and delivery of staff development activities to gain the greatestacceptance. Collaboration of teachers and supervisors will enhance the staffdevelopment program and lead to improved student learning. Staffdevelopment programs need to be comprehensive and continuous programsthat are carefully designed for personal and organizational growth. Theactivities should be founded upon strong theoretical, conceptual, or researchbases. The information must be related to practice with ample opportunitiesprovided for modeling and coaching. Professional training sessions developedfor teachers must be consistent with adult learning theory. A well-planned andadministered staff development program may be one of the most criticalfactors in the improvement of instruction and subsequently in the increase instudent learning.ConclusionThe supervision of instruction is by design a developmental process with themain purpose of improving the instructional program, generally and teaching,specifically. Only when this process is carefully planned and executed cansuccess be assured.The supervisory function is best utilized as a continuous process rather thanone that responds only to personnel problems. Administrators withsupervisory responsibility have the opportunity to have tremendous influenceon the school program and help ensure the benefits of a strong program ofinstruction for children.Discussion Questions
1. Make a list of adjectives that describe the characteristics of an effectiveschool supervisor. Identify any items that would not apply to an administrator.Why not?2. What are the five most important skills a supervisor must possess toimprove the quality and diversity of instruction in the school?3. List questions that could be asked in a pre-observation conference to obtaina clear idea of what is planned for the lesson you will observe. What questionscould be used in the post-conference to encourage teachers to discussportions of the lesson that did not achieve the desired outcomes?4. Which strategies can supervisors use to help teachers view evaluation as away of improving instructional opportunities for students?Suggested Projects or Activities1. Interview two teachers to determine what processes and behaviorsdisplayed by their supervisors are most effective in helping them improve theirteaching. Summarize the interview, describe the differences and similarities inthe two viewpoints. Conclude with your reactions.2. Interview two practicing school administrators to determine the steps theyuse for teacher evaluation and what they look for when conducting aclassroom observation. Summarize the interviews, compare the twointerviews, and react to the findings.3. Observe a lesson. Submit your notes, or script, from the observation as wellas the objectives you would have selected for a conference with the teacher.4. Work with a colleague and go through the steps from pre-conference,observation, to conference; to complete the clinical supervision of a classroomlesson.5. Interview at least three teachers to determine their perceptions of thestrengths and weaknesses of inservice and staff development programs.Summarize and conclude with your reactions and observations.Suggested Readings
Acheson, K., & Gall, M. (1987). Techniques in the clinical supervision ofteachers (2nd ed.). White Plains, NY: Longman.Beach, D., & Reinhartz, J. (1989). Supervision: Focus on instruction. NewYork: Harper& Row.Borich, G. (1990). Observational skills for effective teaching. Columbus, OH:Merrill.Duckworth, E. (1987). The having of wonderful ideas and other essays onteaching and learning. New York: Teachers College Press.Glickman, C. D. (1985). Supervision of instruction: A developmental approach.Boston:Allyn and Bacon.Good, T., & Brophy, J. (1987). Looking in classrooms (4th ed.). New York:Harper & Row.Joyce, B. (Ed.). (1990). Changing school culture through staff decisionsdevelopment. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and CurriculumDevelopment.McNeil, J., & Wils, J. (1990). The essentials of teaching: Decisions, plans,methods. New York: Macmillan.Smith, W., & Andrews, R. (1989). Instructional leadership: How principalsmake a difference. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision andCurriculum Development.Stanley, S., & Popham, J. (1990). Teacher evaluation: Six prescriptions forsuccess.Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.Zumwalt, K. (Ed.). (1986). Improving teaching. Alexandria, VA: Association forSupervision and Curriculum Development.References
Ausubel, D. P. (1960). Use of advance organizers in the learning andretention of meaningful verbal material. Journal of Educational Psychology,51, 267-272.Bellon, J., Bellon, E., & Handler, J. (1977). Instructional improvement:Principles and processes. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt.Bransford, J. D., & Johnson, M. K. (1972). Contextual prerequisites forunderstanding: Some investigations into comprehension and recall. Journal ofVerbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 11, 717-726.Education Codes of California. (1991). Wests Annotated Education Codes.St. Paul, MN: West.Emmer, E., & Evertson, C. (1979). Some prescriptions and activities fororganizing and managing the elementary classroom. Austin, TX: TheResearch and Development Center for Teacher Education.Gentile, R. (1987). Recent retention research: What educators should know.The High School Journal, 70(2), 77-86.Gentile, R. (1988). Instructional improvement. A Summary and analysis ofMadeline Hunters essential elementary instruction and supervision. Oxford,OH: National Staff Development Council.Good, I. J. (1983). Good thinking: The foundations of probability and itsapplications. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Hunter, M. (1982). Mastery teaching. Lansing, MI: TIP.Hunter, M., & Russel, D. (1977, September). How can I plan more effectivelessons? Instructor, 87, 74-75.Johnson, D. W., Johnson, R., Holubec, E. J., & Roy, P. (1984). Circles oflearning: Cooperation in the classroom. Alexandria, VA: Association forSupervision and Curriculum Development.Joyce, B. R., & Weil, M. (1986). Models of teaching (3rd ed.). EnglewoodCliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Rosenshine, B., & Stevens, R. (1986). Teaching functions. In M.C. Wittrock,Handbook of research on teaching (3rd ed.). New York: Macmillan. East Penn School District Supervision and Evaluation DefinitionsRussel, D., & Hunter M. (1977, September). Planning for effectiveinstruction. Instructor, 87.INSTRUCTIONAL SUPERVISION AND EVALUATIONDEFINITIONSSUPERVISIONSupervision is a formative process that focuses upon professional development and theimprovement of instruction. It is characterized by a collegial, helping relationship betweenadministrators and the teachers in a climate of trust and mutual understanding. Supervisionencourages professional growth and development of staff and high quality classroomperformance that promotes improved student learning. In a quality supervision program, thefollowing conditions are present:1. It is assumed that supervision is a participatory process with an ongoing dialogue betweenadministrators and teachers to find improved methods for the delivery of instruction.Administrators strive to share the principles and practices of quality teaching while promotinginput and decision making on the part of the teachers.2. Supervision encourages a wide variety of instructional techniques and diversity in teachingmethods which take into account the unique talents and capabilities of each teacher.3. Administrators support the improvement of instruction by observing teaching as well as bygiving suggestions, coaching, or demonstrating a teaching skill or an alternative teachingmethod. They also provide resources such as videotapes of a particular skill, staff developmentactivities to individuals or small groups of teachers, and appropriate instructional materials thatenhance the delivery of instruction.These resources will be available through all administrators.4. Academic freedom is promoted by the recognition that teachers have the professional trainingand expertise to make curricular and procedural decisions affecting the daily management andorganization of their classrooms.5. Supervision supports the professional growth process by allowing for teacher initiative, trialand error, and experimentation with new or alternative methods of instruction. Collaborationbetween administrator and teacher to encourage diversity, variety, and personal initiative ininstructional delivery is a desirable end to the supervisory process.6. Supervision is an interpersonal process in which good faith on the part of both parties formsthe basis for a trusting relationship.7. Supervision is a positive process in which the major focus is upon enhanced student learningresulting from a long-term investment in the growth and development of the professionalteaching staff.
8. The supervisory process is not intended to impact negatively on the final evaluation forteachers except for those clearly identified as being in need of substantial improvement.Supervision is not related to the issue of continuing employment except for those very fewcases where a teachers performance has been rated as unsatisfactory.Where such rating is based upon classroom performance, it is required that the observeddeficiencies be reported to the teacher on the Professional Observation form and that a plan forimprovement be established with the teacher with a reasonable period of time available prior tothe rating being issued.EVALUATIONEvaluation, or rating, is a summative judgment of teacher performance issued on theProfessional Evaluation Form. It is based upon direct classroom observations and the principalsassessment of performance of the teacher on each of the 24 performance criteria during anevaluation period. It requires an assessment of satisfactory, needs improvement, orunsatisfactory on each of the performance criteria. An overall rating of satisfactory orunsatisfactory is also required. Evaluation is characterized in the following ways:1. It is the formal opportunity for the responsible administrator to provide a fair, constructiveevaluation for each professional and to draw a distinction between individuals who demonstratesatisfactory or greater than satisfactory performance and those who do not.2. Items rated as unsatisfactory and/or needs improvement are the result of observed behavior.Identified deficits are clearly communicated to the employee in writing at the time of theevaluation conference when the Professional Evaluation Form is issued.3. Evaluation indicates a difference between standard and substandard practice, and it identifiesand documents all instances of substandard practice; it proposes a plan for assisting thesubstandard performer to improve. All recommendations for improvement will be individualizedto the identified deficits and will be fully explained to the substandard performer. Administratorswill provide constructive suggestions for improvement, and they will communicate to theemployee a written plan and time line for improvement.4. The employee whose overall performance is unsatisfactory or needs improvement isexpected to make a strong effort to improve to a satisfactory level prior to the next rating beingissued. In cases rated as unsatisfactory where no improvement occurs, a second rating ofunsatisfactory will be given with a recommendation for dismissal to the Superintendent.OBSERVATIONSObservations provide a process for collecting data in two ways: the clinical process with therequired pre- observation data sheet completed or the drop-in observation, with little or no priornotice. Both formal observation models are completed with the reporting of the observersfindings on the districts observation form accompanied by a post-conference.The purpose of the post-conference is to share perceptions and reactions to the lesson. It isdesirable to create a post-conference climate in which the observers findings may be freelydiscussed. One strategy for achieving this condition is to postpone final preparation of theobservation form until after the conference is held. Sending the final observation report to the
teacher for signatures, allowing the teacher some additional time to review the report, react ifappropriate, and sign completes the process.In any event, if a written recommendation for improvement is being considered as the result ofan observation, it will be discussed with the teacher prior to final preparation of the observationreport. If an observer other than the principal has made a recommendation for improvement, itwill be discussed with the principal prior to final preparation of the observation report.The Pre-Observation Data Sheet for the clinical model is also included. Use of this data sheetwill enable the observer and teacher to focus on important aspects of the instruction to beobserved.Teachers and administrators often view observation of classroom instruction as part of thesupervisory process. Although the act of observing may indeed lead to discussions andrelationships described earlier under Supervision, it is also a part of the evaluation process asmandated by the state.INFORMAL OBSERVATION/PARTICIPATIONInformal observations or visitations in a classroom represent supervision and are encouraged.These occasional visits are to be in a positive mode where possible and are intended to allowfor growth in the relationship between the observer and the instructor while focusing upon thegrowth of the learners. A written report of the visits will not be kept. Informal verbal dialoguebetween observer and teacher, providing honest and open communication and sharing ofperceptions, is encouraged. The observer is encouraged to participate.PROCEDURE FOR STAFF EVALUATION / RATINGEvaluation of professional employees shall be based on formal observations and the evaluator’sjudgment of the employees total performance during the rating period. All tenured teachersshall be evaluated at least once per year, and all non-tenured teachers shall be evaluated atleast twice per year, once in each semester. The principal, as the designee of theSuperintendent, shall complete the Professional Evaluation Form and post conference withinfive working days of the last observation.The twenty-four descriptors on the evaluation form describe the qualities of satisfactoryperformance. Each descriptor will be checked as Satisfactory, Needs Improvement,Unsatisfactory, or Not Applicable. A "Needs Improvement" is a satisfactory rating, but a short,concise statement, must accompany the written recommendation for improving performance. Adescriptor checked as "Unsatisfactory" requires supporting statements, including an anecdotalreport which summarizes the steps needed for performance improvement.When a descriptor being rated as NI or U specifically relates to a deficiency attributable toclassroom instruction and observation, the recommendations and/or supporting statements shallbe linked to the area of deficit referred to on the comment section of the observation form.Each of the four major categories on the Professional Evaluation Form (Planning andPreparation, Classroom Environment, Instructional Delivery an Professionalism) will beconsidered in the overall rating for the period as either "Satisfactory" or "Unsatisfactory." It ispossible, that a gross deficiency in a single category might be sufficiently serious to warrant atotal rating of "Unsatisfactory."
An overall Unsatisfactory evaluation is applied when a teachers performance does not meet asatisfactory level on the established criteria. In such cases, the rater will provide documentationoutlining the areas of unsatisfactory performance, written strategies for improvement, and therequirements for a return to a Satisfactory rating within a specified time period. The teachershall have the right to representation during this evaluation conference. Two consecutiveunsatisfactory evaluations of a professional employee will result in a recommendation to theSuperintendent for dismissal.If the employee refuses to sign in the space provided, such refusal shall be recorded and dated.The employee will be notified in writing of this notation by the principal within ten calendar days.The Superintendent shall review and sign all evaluations. Unsatisfactory evaluations shall besigned within five working days of the last observation.APPEAL PROCEDUREAll employees have the right to appeal their ratings.If a disagreement occurs, the teacher must submit to the evaluator a written statement of thereasons for disagreement within five working days of receipt of the evaluation. A conferencemust be held to discuss the differences within five working days of receipt of the statement. Thisprocess may terminate the appeal procedure by mutual agreement.If the employee wishes to appeal further, he/she should submit an Intent to Appeal statement(letter or memo) to the Superintendent within five working days of the conference with theevaluator. A dated statement of reasons for disagreement should be submitted in writing to theSuperintendent within twenty-one calendar days. The teacher will have a conference with theSuperintendent, if desired. The Superintendent shall render the final decision on all evaluationson the Professional Evaluation Form.IMPORTANT DAYS OF THE YEARJanuary 12 : National Youth Day.January 15 :Army Day.January 26 :Indias Republic Day and InternationalCustoms day.January 30 :Martyrs DayFebruary 24 :Central Excise Day.February 28 :National ScienceDay.March 8 :International Womens Day.March 15 :World Disabled Day.March 21 :World ForestryDay.March 21 :International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.March 23 :WorldMeteorological Day.April 5 :National Maritime Day.April 7 :World Health Day.April 18 :World HeritageDay.April 22 :Earth Day.May 1 :Workers Day (International Labor Day).May 3 :Press Freedom Day.May(2nd Sunday) : Mothers Day.May 8 :World Red Cross Day.May 11 :National Technology Day.May 15:International Day of the Family.
May 17 :World Telecommunication Day.May 24 :Commonwealth Day.May 31 :Anti-Tobacco Day.June 4:International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression.June 5 : World Environment Day.June(2ndSunday) : Fathers Day.June 26 :International day against Drug abuse & Illicit Trafficking.June 27 :WorldDiabetes Day.July 6 :World Zoonoses Day.July 11 :World Population Day.August 3 :InternationalFriendship Day.August 6 :Hiroshima Day,August 9 :Quit India Day and Nagasaki Day.August 15:Independence Day.August 29 :National Sports Day.September 5 :Teachers Day.September 8 :WorldLiteracy Day.September 16 :World Ozone Day.September 21 :Alzheimers Day.September 26 : Day of theDeaf.September 27 : World Tourism Day.October 1 : International day of the Elderly.October 3 :WorldHabitat Day.October 4 :World Animal Welfare Day.October 8 :Indian Air Force Day.October 9 :World Post Officeday.October 10 :National Post Day.October 13 :UN International Day for National disasterreduction.October 14 :World Standards Day.October 15 :World White Cane Day( guiding theBlind).October 16 :World Food Day.October 24 :UN Day, World development information Day.October30 :World Thrift Day. November 14 : Childrens Day ( in India ) November 20 :Africa IndustrializationDay. November 29 :International Day of Solidarity with Palestinian People.December 1 :World AidsDay.December 4 :Navy Day.December 7 :Armed Forces Flag Day.December 10 :Human RightDay.December 23 :Kisan Divas Farmers Da