Observations question....

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Pi-R-Squared, Mar 4, 2021.

  1. Pi-R-Squared

    Pi-R-Squared Connoisseur

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    Mar 4, 2021

    When school started, the P said that teachers will have 1 announced and 1 unannounced observation. In the P's office around October, my name was listed on his board under "observations to be done." But no observation ever happened. I didn't say anything to the P about it figuring he was busy or forgot or something.... But, when we came back in January, the list on his board was erased. He hasn't mentioned anything to me and I haven't asked. So, what could that mean? Can a principal actually say, "forget it..." when it comes to observations?
     
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  3. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    Mar 4, 2021

    I've definitely had instances where my principal wrote up an "observation" that wasn't officially an observation. Not that she made it up exactly, but more that... it didn't quite happen as an official evaluation or observation.

    I think it also depends on how much experience you have. After the first few years, my P and AP have gotten much more relaxed about whether they actually observed me as much as they were supposed to.

    Did your P do any walkthroughs or short unofficial observations of your class? One of my observations this year was written up from a "walkthrough" (we were remote) because evaluations were due and I was one short. AP didn't realize(?) we still needed another one before I went on leave, so she called and said she was going to use the walkthrough as my last observation for my eval.
     
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  4. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    Mar 4, 2021

    All of our observations are suspended until further notice so your P might have either pushed them until the end of the year or making some other arrangements with one teacher at a time. There's a chance he forgot I guess. Can you ask other teachers if they have had them?
     
  5. Missy

    Missy Aficionado

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    Mar 5, 2021

    If you have a union and a contract, the evaluation process should be clearly spelled out; it is not ok (in my opinion), for principals to make up the procedures as they go along.
     
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  6. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Mar 5, 2021

    Has there been any other mention of observations on the part of your administration, either to you or your entire staff?
     
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  7. Aces

    Aces Devotee

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    Mar 6, 2021

    Depending on their comfort level with you, an observation could have been simply looking through the window while you taught. There’s a lot of ways to observe a teacher without announcing “hey I’m watching you”.
     
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  8. Loomistrout

    Loomistrout Devotee

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    Mar 7, 2021

    What it means is you should ask. When you see (or hear) something that seems confusing go to the source to straighten in out. In my district two observations per year are required during a teacher’s initial two-year probationary period. After probationary period observations are rotated every other year = one year on one year off. Sometimes observation dates and times are changed due to schedule mishaps, but I don’t recall a principal taking the stance to forget it.
     
  9. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Mar 8, 2021

    I’ve definitely had principals at my school “forget it”. I don’t know if it’s intentional or unintentional. Most likely with what I’ve observed, it’s a case of a principal mistakenly thinking someone like a vice principal or other supervisor will take care of it, and then no one following up to see if it happened, or the person who is supposed to be doing the observation never being told by the principal to do so. This type of assumption/disorganization takes place often in my school system.
     
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  10. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Connoisseur

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    Mar 11, 2021

    I had it happen 2x in my career. Both times, the P was busy. Both times, he just marked down the + stuff they had commented on during a walk through. Also, the P knew me well enough to know what I was doing or had done. It wasn't like he told me to "forget about it." He just gave it to me and asked if I had any questions.
     
  11. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Mar 12, 2021

    My first year of teaching I got all 4’s (perfect) after a maybe ten minute observation. I was flattered but also knew it was not an objective view of my skills. The principal only wanted to check it off his list. The meeting for it was something like, “Great job. Any questions?”

    I’m a much better teacher now, and get excellent observation scores generally, but still have never gotten all perfect marks as it’s not something my current admin would probably ever do. That’s why I think observations are completely biased. It depends on who’s observing, their opinion of you, and their philosophy around scoring.
     
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