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Educator Evaluation

Frequently Asked Questions


  1. Regulations
  2. DESE Supports & Engagement
    1. Integration with other Initiatives
      1. Licensure and Professional Development
      2. MA Curriculum Frameworks
      3. Educator Preparation
      4. Other District Priorities
    2. Model System
  3. 5-Step Cycle & Summative Performance Rating
    1. Training
    2. Rubrics
    3. Goal Setting
    4. Evidence
    5. Student and Staff Feedback
    6. Formative Assessment/Evaluation and Summative Performance Rating
  4. Background and History
  5. View all

I. Regulations

  1. What is the legal basis for the Massachusetts Educator Evaluation Framework and where can I find information on its requirements?

    The regulations on educator evaluation were adopted pursuant to the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education's statutory authority and consistent with existing statutory requirements: M.G.L. c.69, sec. 1B and c.71 sec. 38. More details on the requirements of the regulations are available on DESE's educator evaluation website. In particular, please see the Regulations for the Evaluation of Educators, 603 CMR 35.00 and the Quick Reference Guide on the MA Educator Evaluation Framework .

  2. Which types of schools are covered under the regulations?

    All district schools and Horace Mann charter schools are subject to the educator evaluation regulations. Educators serving in programs or schools operated by Educational Collaboratives are also covered by the regulations. Commonwealth Charter Schools are not covered by the regulations.

  3. Which types of educators are covered under the regulations?

    The regulations apply to all teachers, principals, superintendents, and other staff in positions that require a DESE-issued teacher, specialist, professional support personnel, or administrative license (603 CMR 35.00). For a list of DESE-issued licenses, review the Regulations for Educator Licensure and Preparation Program Approval (603 CMR 7.04 (3)), Licenses and Routes for Administrators (603 CMR 7.09), Types of Vocational Technical Teacher Licenses (603 CMR 4.07), Types of Vocational Technical Administrator Licenses (603 CMR 4.08), and Types of Vocational Technical Cooperative Education Coordinator Licenses (603 CMR 4.09).

  4. What was the implementation timeline for the regulations?

    The regulations were implemented as follows:

    1. Districts with Level 4 schools adopted and implemented new educator evaluation systems in Level 4 schools during the 2011-2012 school year.
    2. RTTT districts and RTTT charter schools adopted and implemented new educator evaluation systems during the 2012-2013 school year with at least 50% of their educators.
    3. All remaining school districts covered under the new regulations implemented new educator evaluation systems during the 2013-2014 school year with at least 50% of their educators.

  5. Do the regulations remove evaluation as a subject of mandatory collective bargaining?

    No. The MA statutes regarding evaluation and collective bargaining have not changed. The regulations established a more comprehensive set of requirements ("principles") of evaluation than prior regulations. All districts are required to include specified core elements in their evaluation systems, but other features are collectively bargained at the local level.

  6. Are video observations allowed by the regulations?

    Yes. The regulations permit the use of video. How video is used in evaluation is subject to collective bargaining and appropriate laws relating to student privacy.

  7. Is peer review permissible under the regulations?

    Yes. The regulations permit peer assistance and review programs, if agreed upon during the collective bargaining process at the local level.

  8. How does DESE monitor educator evaluation implementation?

    DESE monitors implementation through a variety of mechanisms, including reviewing districts' evaluation system submissions and educator performance data. DESE's Center for District and School Accountability conducts district reviews that provide an assessment of district systems, including educator evaluation. Additionally, DESE contracted with an external organization to conduct a three-year implementation study of the MA evaluation regulations.

Last Updated: August 16, 2018

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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906

Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370


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