|Measuring Teacher Impact on Student Growth/Tested Grade and Subjects (Value-Added)
Louisiana is recognized as a national leader in its use of value-added performance measures. Teachers and students in more than 75 schools are already benefitting from Louisiana’s Teacher Advancement Program (TAP), which utilizes value-added data to guide professional development and improve teacher effectiveness. And since 2007, Louisiana’s Teacher Preparation Program Assessment Model (TPPAM) has used value-added data to measure the effectiveness of teacher preparation programs by tying student growth measures to their teachers, and to the colleges and universities that trained those teachers.
The same value-added approach used to study the effectiveness of teacher preparation programs can now be used to comply with Act 54, which mandates the value-added method be used for teacher evaluations if statewide assessment data is available. Currently, about one-third of Louisiana’s teachers provide instruction in grades and subjects currently tested and fall into this category.
Louisiana’s value-added model for tested grades and subjects is currently being piloted in 20 districts. BESE will consider a recommendation to officially adopt the test model no sooner than spring 2011.
How Value-Added Assessment Works
Value-added assessment begins by using each student’s history of test score in core subjects for up to three years, and critical individual student factors (such as special education disability diagnosis, attendance, discipline history, and free lunch status) to estimate a student’s expected level of achievement for the current year. This estimate is derived from each individual student’s data, and the data for all other test takers in Louisiana.
In order for a student’s assessment results to contribute to a value-added assessment for that teacher, the student must: have been enrolled in that school from early fall until testing time; have a prior year of standardized test data; and take the regular state assessments (LEAP and iLEAP). As a result of these rules, only students in grades 4-9 will be eligible for inclusion in value-added assessments this year, and results will only be available in core content areas. Teachers will also be given the opportunity to review class rosters prior to them contributing to a value-added assessment. Additionally, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education will be developing policies to govern the use of value- added assessment and to address issues like extraordinary circumstances under which scores will be invalidated.
The assessment compares actual student achievement for eligible students to the predicted achievement to determine if the student has made more, less, or a typical amount of progress. The results for all students in a teacher’s assignment are then combined for that teacher. If students in a teacher’s class make more progress than would be expected based on their educational histories, the teacher would receive a positive result; teachers whose students make less progress than would be expected based on their prior achievement, demographic factors, and attendance would receive a negative result. If students’ results are consistent with their prior performance, the result would be a zero.