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Evaluation initiative earning praise

11/11/2013

The UEA evaluation initiative is getting rave reviews as it debuts at member meetings in school districts across the state.

"I went to the (evaluation) meeting with a bad attitude. Fortunately, the information and utilitarian nature of the Toolkit made me glad I attended. Thanks to all involved,” commented a Park City Education Association member.

“The Toolkit is the most relevant and valuable thing (I) have received during (my) membership,” a long-time Davis Education Association member said.

A Carbon Education Association member noted, “When I learned about (the Toolkit), it was like a huge burden lifted off my shoulders…It will help so much!"

And a meeting organizer at Wasatch High School said, “I was so excited. I was expecting 10 (members) and 84 attended…Teachers loved it and were excited to get the Toolkit.”

The Evaluation Toolkit, currently available to members on a flash drive, is part of the UEA’s Educators Taking the Lead initiative to strengthen the teaching profession.

As part of the initiative, The UEA is providing professional development, materials and other information to local associations in each school district. Each regional UniServ office or local association will develop its own plan for how to use the available resources to support the unique needs of educators in each area. Contact your local association or UniServ for details.

In the five weeks from the time the initiative kicked off in late September until the end of October, evaluation leaders from around the state organized more than 40 meetings reaching nearly 1,500 UEA members in 18 school districts.

The training and resources developed under the ‘Taking the Lead’ initiative will be available only to educators who choose to contribute toward the work by joining their professional association.

“It’s critical for us to remember that (the UEA Educators Taking the Lead initiative) is about improving classroom instruction and strengthening our profession, as well as assisting teachers with their evaluations,” UEA President Sharon Gallagher-Fishbaugh told UEA leaders from across Utah gathered for an all-day evaluations training Sept. 21 in Sandy. “When teachers work together to improve instruction, they elevate their profession.”

About 150 educators participated in the Sept. 21 training which kicked off the initiative (see more)

During the 2013 legislative session, the State Office of Education requested $450,000 to implement requirements of the new evaluation framework and train teachers. It was not funded. Where the legislature committed nothing, the NEA, UEA and local associations are committing more than $150,000 to support this training. The training and resources are paid for by, and available to, educators who belong to their professional association. Any licensed educator is welcome to participate by becoming a member of their local UEA affiliate.

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