FETC 2012 | News

Florida District Adopts Web-Based Tool for Teacher Effectiveness Evaluations

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Florida's Citrus County School District is beginning a system-wide rollout of a Web-based teacher effectiveness evaluation tool. The district joins 21 others in Florida that have adopted the FASTe platform from ed tech developer Performance Matters.

FASTe (for "Formative Action System for Teacher Effectiveness) is designed to provide continuous evaluations of teachers with the aim of measuring the effectiveness of instructional practices and the impact of teachers on their students.

According to information released by Performance Matters at the FETC 2012 National Conference in Orlando, Citrus County piloted FASTe in some of its schools in January. The plan now calls for a rollout to the district's 23 schools by next fall.

"We needed a tool to match the state's new standards for teacher effectiveness and we wanted one integrated tool to serve our needs across the district. FASTe offered us a tool to measure teacher effectiveness, to connect that data with our student data, and to provide differentiated resources to support our teachers and extend their abilities," said Patrick Simon, director of research and accountability for Citrus County School District, in a statements released this week. "We've already received feedback from several administrators, who began implementing FASTe just this month, that it is easy to use and that it enables them to note in a natural, genuine way what is happening every day in their classrooms. FASTe is also a huge leap forward for us because it not only helps teachers to know what their strengths and weaknesses are, but it connects them to the resources they need to improve their practice. This will play a very important role in our ongoing efforts to improve teaching and learning."

The School District of Indian River County in Florida is another recent adopter of FASTe.

In related news, Performance Matters reported this week that 14 districts in Florida adopted the company's Web-based assessment and data management systems in 2011, including Hernando County Schools and Clay County School District, as well as "the majority of school districts located in the Panhandle area of Florida."

In total, according to the company, 29 districts--43 percent of all districts in Florida--now use the Performance Matters system.

About the Author

David Nagel is the former editorial director of 1105 Media's Education Group and editor-in-chief of THE Journal, STEAM Universe, and Spaces4Learning. A 30-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art, marketing, media, and business publications.

He can be reached at [email protected]. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/davidrnagel/ .