Growth-Oriented Feedback
Teacher leaders and other content experts provide frequent, growth-oriented feedback to teachers to improve instructional practice.
In the systems we studied, teacher leaders and other instructional experts provide frequent, growth-oriented feedback to teachers, in the context of a culture of learning. These leaders may be teachers, deans, coaches or school administrators, who bring significant expertise in particular grades and subjects. Each supports fewer teachers than a typical district-assigned coach, with time specifically allocated for frequent observations and debriefs, as well as training to strengthen their own content knowledge and coaching practices.

Does your school system…

Develop strategic teacher feedback practices Less

Provide teachers with frequent observations and actionable, growth-oriented feedback from content experts who are deeply familiar with the standards, curricula and assessments.
Please include the total amount of time required across all formal observations for the teacher evaluation process (e.g. 30 minutes twice a year = 1 hour total).
Please include the total amount of time for any informal observations that occur above and beyond the formal observation requirements of the evaluation process.
This includes any time set aside to discuss the results of the observation. Instructional content experts are those who are deeply familiar with content standards and have a track record of success teaching in the content area they are supporting. Experts usually come in the form of (a) administrators: principals, assistant principal, or specialized dean or director role, (b) Instructional coaches, and/or (c) teacher leaders.
This includes the amount of time set aside to debrief and identify opportunities to adjust practice. Instructional content experts are those who are deeply familiar with content standards and have a track record of success teaching in the content area they are supporting. Experts usually come in the form of (a) administrators: principals, assistant principal, or specialized dean or director role, (b) Instructional coaches, and/or (c) teacher leaders.
Case study systems found that creating opportunities for teachers to observe peers’ classrooms and do walkthroughs at other schools helped create foster strong collaboration practices and a growth-oriented professional learning mindset.

Invest in school-based instructional experts Less

Provide in school-based experts who can help teachers use curriculum, differentiate instruction appropriately, and adjust instructional approaches to meet students’ needs.
Teacher support load may vary based on the position and the school; try to estimate the average for a typical instructional expert in your system.
This may vary based on the position and the school; try to estimate the average for a typical school leader in your system.
Case study systems found that instructional experts need time to review draft lesson plans, synthesize the most important feedback, analyze student data across classrooms, and design trainings to meet teachers’ common development needs.

Create high-impact teacher leader roles Less

Leverage high-performing, experienced teachers via teacher leadership roles to support the greater demand for content-based instructional expertise in schools.
Case study systems found that creating opportunities for high-performing, experienced teacher leaders to take on the responsibility of supporting teams of teachers often helped to extend the reach of excellent teachers and was also an effective way to increase school-based instructional expertise without hiring additional staff positions.
Case study systems have found it helpful to centrally define the stipend or salary ranges for different teacher roles in order to align amounts to the level of responsibility and expertise required as well as the value of the investments they displace.
Case study systems found that for teacher leaders to be effective in their roles, they needed time to review draft lesson plans, synthesize the most important feedback, analyze student data across classrooms, and design training to meet teachers’ common development needs. This additional time can come in the form of release periods from direct instruction, or stipends to pay for additional time beyond the teacher day.
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