The Australian newspaper today points to a new report:
The Grattan Institute's report Better Teacher Appraisal and Feedback: Improving Performance, released today, shows that a system of meaningful appraisal and feedback for teachers will increase their effectiveness by 20 to 30 per cent. It will address teachers' concerns about the current systems of evaluation: 63 per cent of teachers report that appraisals of their work are done purely to meet administrative requirements; 91 per cent say the best teachers do not receive the greatest recognition.
When I was much younger, there was a system of annual assessment, where an "inspector" visited, sat in on a few lessons and then wrote a report. I don't remember any remedial action being taken with me or colleagues as a result of the comments on the report. Perhaps it was done discreetly. I know there were people who used to get panic-stricken about their impending inspection though, and you really did try to put your best foot forward on that day.
These days there is a real tendency to judge teachers on things like student exam results or national test results. A more 360-degree assessment seems a lot fairer, but really only if the resultant report can lead to better remediation rather than punitive steps.
This can be achieved by schools choosing four of eight methods to assess teachers and provide feedback. These are: student performance and assessments; peer observation; observation of classroom teaching and learning; student surveys; parent surveys; 360-degree assessment; self-assessment and external observation.