A new mandatory teacher performance review process will be introduced in Queensland public schools from the start of the 2015 school year.
Queensland’s Minister for Education, Training and Employment John-Paul Langbroek said it would make sure every school teacher is performing at their best.
“This new performance process will make a real difference to our children by focusing on the most important person in their classroom – the teacher,” Langbroek said in a statement.
“The Government and the union recognise that great teachers play a critical role in giving young Queenslanders the educational experience they deserve and preparing them for the future.”
Queensland Teachers’ Union (QTU) President Kevin Bates said the agreed process emphasised the collegial nature of teaching and recognised the complex nature of the profession, although he added that it was important to focus on a wide range of data sources – not just student achievement.
“That’s a critical difference for us in terms of the agreed process, that it doesn’t unfairly over-emphasise a particular data source, that it embraces a wide range of data sources, and teachers and principals cooperatively have developed an approach that will see those real-time issues built-in to whatever process is undertaken,” Bates told Education Matters magazine.
“What this process is about is recognising professionalism, respecting the role that teachers play and it will be a negotiated process between teachers and principals that will outline a set of goals for professional learning and practice that teachers will embrace over the course of 12 months.”
Bates said the mandatory performance review process will build on the existing teacher performance review framework that has been in place in Queensland’s public schools since September 2012, but that has not been applied appropriately, or even at all, at every school.
“We’re hoping it will lead to engagement in professional development, supported by the school or the employer and by teachers in their own right, which is something teachers already do to a very large extent, particularly in their own time at their own cost,” Bates said. “That’s fundamental because you can’t expect growth unless there’s opportunities for learning that are going to be provided for teachers in this process.”
Langbroek said the annual review process will have three distinct phases: reflection and goal setting, professional practice and learning, and feedback and review. Alignment with the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers will provide benchmarks for the career stages to which teachers can aspire.