Looking at all states (both those that received Race to the Top grants and those that did not), researchers found that states reported requiring fewer than half of eight teacher evaluation policies aligned with Race to the Top priorities. Looking at the two groups separately, Race to the Top states reported requiring more teacher evaluation policies aligned with Race to the Top priorities than states that did not receive Race to the Top grants (about half versus about a quarter).
Other key findings include:
- States’ teacher evaluation policies aligned most with Race to the Top priorities on using multiple measures to evaluate teacher performance (30 states), using multiple rating categories to classify performance (31 states), and conducting annual evaluations (25 states).
- States’ policies aligned least with Race to the Top priorities on using evaluation results to inform decisions regarding compensation (6 states for annual salary increases, and 5 states for performance-based compensation) and career advancement (1 state).
About the Study: This analysis is part of a large-scale evaluation sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences. Mathematica conducted interviews with school administrators in 49 states and the District of Columbia in spring 2012. Responses were used to assess the extent to which states’ reported teacher evaluation requirements aligned with criteria in the Race to the Top application. To account for differences in timing, levels of funding, and scope, the study team created three groups of states: (1) states that received Race to the Top grants in Round 1 or 2 of the Race to the Top competition, (2) states that received Race to the Top grants in Round 3 of the competition, and (3) states that did not receive Race to the Top grants. When interviews for this study were conducted, Race to the Top states were no more than halfway through their four-year grant period. Documenting these policy requirements in the early years of Race to the Top implementation can help inform policymakers about the pace of policy innovation nationally.
About Mathematica: Mathematica Policy Research seeks to improve public well-being by conducting studies and assisting clients with program evaluation and policy research, survey design and data collection, research assessment and interpretation, and program performance/data management. Its clients include foundations, federal and state governments, and private-sector and international organizations. The employee-owned company, with offices in Princeton, NJ; Ann Arbor, MI; Cambridge, MA; Chicago, IL; Oakland, CA; and Washington, DC, has conducted some of the most important studies of health care, international, disability, education, family support, employment, nutrition, and early childhood policies and programs.