Automating Authentic Assessment
Part II

Return to Automating Authentic Assessment
Part I

at Stone Middle School
Love Their
Teacher Assessment Tools!

Along with the many other responsibilities of school administrators, comes the annual ordeal of assessing staff performance. As with student evaluation, there are many obstacles to overcome:

Typical Execution of the Task
The administrator typically makes numerous informal observations of the staff member during the course of the year. They then conduct at least one formal observation. During this visit, the administrator carries a copy of instrument to be used for the report in their mind or in their notebook. Once in the classroom, the administrator records meaningful phrases onto a the copy of the form, or another sheet of paper.

These (30-180) sets of paper are then passed on to the secretary, who transcribes them from paper to the computer or typewriter. The administrator then looks at the printed copy and makes corrections and additions, and passes it back to the secretary. Hopefully, (legibility of handwriting aside) the final document can then be generated.

Use the Power of Technology

Suppose you could skip the secretary having to transcribe every staff members evaluation? Suppose the administrator had available a selection of frequently used comments that could be customized on the fly or after the observation. All of this is certainly possible with today's technology, and it is easier than you might think.

During the last five years at Stone Middle School, administrators have used an eMate, a small laptop-like version of the Newton Operating System formerly sold by Apple Computer to record their annual instructional staff review. Shana's Informed Digital Form Designer was used to create a mobile database with many of the common observation comments that an administrator might make.

After the administrator had captured their observations, this data would be downloaded onto a desktop machine, edited and printed. The administrator was then ready to review the form with the teacher. Task done!

Go Wireless!

Making the process more

Picture of Betty Dunn, Principal of Stone Middle School
Betty Dunn,
former Stone Middle School Principal

Using the eMate for Teacher Evaluations has been a fantastic time-saver for me as Principal.

Other administrators are jealous when they hear or see how quickly we can complete the reporting of our annual review.

Picture of Assistant Principal Tim Cool.
Tim Cool,
Stone Middle School Principal
For many years I have dreamed of being able to spend more time working with teachers to improve instruction instead of taking notes while in the classroom.

The eMate is compact, handy, convenient, and incredibly durable. The point and click method has cut my observation time in half, and moved the post conference meeting with the teacher to a more timely date.

This is an example of technology making my job more enjoyable and my time more efficient.
I have found it to be a real time saver as well as an efficient tool to document the evaluation.

I am able to use the pull down screens to select either effective or ineffective phrases that relate to the different areas to be observed. Then I use the keyboard to insert additional info to make each statement more personal and to the point. The final result is more professional looking and my evaluation time is more productive... no more double work.
Assistant Principal, Mrs. Poole takes notes using an Apple eMate while observing a classroom teacher.

Choice Lists make the verbal documentation easy.

Return to Automating Authentic Assessment, Part I

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