Teacher Excellence – Defining – Supporting - Rewarding

What is meant by Teacher Excellence?

gems education female teacher in front of a presentation board

Research has consistently identified the quality of a teacher as being the single most important school-based influence on a student’s academic achievement. Increasing teacher quality has a greater impact than any other educational investment, including reducing class size. With the growing recognition of the direct impact of teachers, there has been an increased focus to qualify and quantify what constitutes effective teaching, how effective teaching can be measured, and what decisions and actions should result from these measurements.

The majority of teacher evaluation systems currently don’t distinguish between teachers’ effectiveness at raising student achievement, as such meaningful development and support is not provided to help low and moderately performing teachers grow and also exemplary educators are not given due recognition. According to The Widget Effect, “the core purpose of evaluation must be to maximize teacher growth and effectiveness, not just document performance as a prelude to dismissal.”

The Widget Effect


Measures of Effective Teaching

The Measures of Effective Teaching study, conducted by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, is perhaps the most comprehensive and thorough investigation into which measures most accurately and consistently identify effective teachers. Conducted over three years, the MET study included more than 3,000 teachers in six different districts across the country, including Dallas ISD.

The MET study provided clear evidence that an approach to teacher evaluation that incorporates multiple measures will consistently identify effective teachers. The three measures identified by the study are classroom observations, student achievement data, and student surveys