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Education

DOE Releases Revised Teacher Evaluation Report

The Florida Department of Education has released a newly-revised preliminary report of teacher evaluations after finding problems with its original calculations, and the state’s new teacher performance data isn’t much different from what it initially put out.

The Department released a preliminary report Wednesday only to retract it hours later. The problem was duplicate reporting of teachers in some counties.

After the state review, the number of teachers rated “effective” dropped a tenth-of a percent to 74.6 percent and the number of those rated “highly-effective” dropped three-tenths of a percent to 21.9 percent. In all, more than 96 percent of the state’s teachers received the two highest ratings.

The state’s new evaluation system factors in student performance and the state’s largest teachers union had expressed concerns over the way that performance is calculated, and how some teachers are graded based on students they don’t teach. The Department of Education told lawmakers Thursday that despite the flawed rollout of the evaluation reports, there is no reason to slow the program’s implementation.

“I think this is a painful year. I think anytime you implement something this large for the first time, there are growing pains. I think the '12-'13 year will be much more telling on how we do as we move forward,” said Interim Education Commissioner Pam Stewart to a Senate Education Committee.

In the upcoming years, the evaluations will be used to determine whether teachers keep their jobs and get pay raises.