State approves Watervliet teacher evaluation plan
Watervliet joins a handful of Capital Region districts with approved teacher, principal evaluation plans in place
Sept. 12, 2012
The Watervliet City School District is among the first districts in the area to receive state approval for the newly-mandated teacher and principal evaluation plans.
On Sept. 11, the New York State Education Department informed the district that its Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) plan had been approved. As of today, Watervliet is one of just six other school districts in the Capital Region – and one of 79 statewide – to have its APPR plan approved by the state.
In 2010, New York was awarded $700 million in federal Race to the Top education funding, which required the implementation of new teacher and principal evaluations. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has threatened to withhold state aid increases from districts that fail to implement new, approved evaluations by January 2013.
The Watervliet City School District, which reached an agreement with its teachers' union regarding APPR requirements last winter, was among the first districts in the state to submit its plan to the state for approval earlier this year. The evaluation plan is part of the new five-year Watervliet teachers’ contract ratified in February. The district and its administrators’ union have also come to an agreement regarding the evaluations.
Under the APPR plan, teachers will be evaluated, in part, on the percentage of student proficiency and growth on state tests. Classroom observations, one of which will be unannounced, will also be part of the new evaluations.
“This is a challenging time in education, with accountability being placed on everyone,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Lori S. Caplan said. “The APPR plan will help make our good teachers great and our great teachers excellent. Going forward teachers, principals and even superintendents will be evaluated based on what students are actually learning. The teachers, administrators and the Board of Education have worked together collaboratively to implement this plan to ensure our students are college and career ready.”