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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

II. ESE Supports & Engagement

  1. Model System

    1. The regulations refer to a "Model System" developed by DESE. What does it contain?

      The Model System is a comprehensive educator evaluation system designed by ESE, pursuant to the educator evaluation regulations, 603 CMR 35.00. The eight-part series was developed to support effective implementation of the regulations by districts and schools across the Commonwealth. For an overview of each section of DESE's Model System, visit the Model System webpage.

      The parts include:

      • Part I: District-Level Planning and Implementation Guide

      • Part II: School-Level Planning and Implementation Guide

      • Part III: Guide to Rubrics and Model Rubrics for Superintendent, Administrator, and Teacher

      • Part IV: Model Collective Bargaining Contract Language

      • Part V: Implementation Guide for Principal Evaluation

      • Part VI: Implementation Guide for Superintendent Evaluation

      • Part VII: Using Evidence of Student Learning in the Evaluation Process

      • Part VIII: Using Staff and Student Feedback in the Evaluation Process

    2. Do districts have to adopt DESE's Model System?

      No. Districts can adopt or adapt DESE's Model System, or they may revise their own educator evaluation systems to comply with the regulations. All evaluation systems are subject to DESE's review to ensure the systems are consistent with the regulations (603 CMR 35.00). DESE's Model System is fully consistent with the regulations.

    3. What opportunities were there for educators to contribute to the creation of tools for the Model System?

      Working with the field to develop and implement the evaluation regulations has been and remains a priority for DESE. To develop the Model System, DESE worked with 11 early adopter districts, 10 districts implementing the framework in their Level 4 schools, and 4 Educational Collaboratives. DESE also engaged a wide range of stakeholders from state associations.

      DESE continues to engage educators in the development of resources, including working with statewide associations for Specialized Instructional Support Personnel (SISPs) to develop role-specific resources, practicing principals to develop performance rating guidance, assessment and curriculum coordinators to develop guidance and resources for the identification and implementation of common assessments, and PreK-12 teachers and administrators to develop ways to collect and use student and staff feedback as part of evaluation. Our standing teacher and principal advisory cabinets are also critical vehicles for soliciting field input on new implementation tools and resources.

    4. What guidance and tools has DESE developed to support educator evaluation implementation beyond the Model System?

      A significant portion of the state's Race to the Top grant was allocated to support implementation of the evaluation framework at both the state and district level. This work included the development of the Model System, the identification of support providers, and the creation of a tools and resources designed to familiarize educators with the requirements of the regulations and support effective implementation. To access these resources, visit the educator evaluation webpage.

    5. What guidance is available for supporting special educators in the Educator Evaluation Framework?

      The Framework strives to highlight commonalities across educators. However, because of the complex job responsibilities of many special educators, the evaluation of these educators within the Framework can represent a unique set of challenges and opportunities. DESE has provided a clearinghouse page containing available guidance for the evaluation of special education personnel, including guidance on using the MCAS-Alternate Assessment as a Common Measure and the Educator Effectiveness Guidebook for Inclusive Practice.

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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