LEAP (Leading Effective Academic Practice) is our new teacher performance assessment system that is being piloted in 16 DPS schools beginning in January. LEAP incorporates multiple measures into the teacher evaluation: student performance data; principal and peer observations and feedback; a teacher’s school-wide contribution; and student perception survey feedback.
The Peer Observer role is a new position to DPS but one that has been used, in various ways, in school districts across the country for a number of years. Peer Observers are teachers who are recognized for their expertise in classroom instruction and best practices. These centrally hired Peer Observers will be part of the classroom observation process and their feedback will be part of the overall evaluation score.
While principals and Peer Observers will use the same framework, rubrics, and feedback protocol, Peer Observers will be matched as closely as possible to the content or grade level band of the teacher they are observing. Peer Observers will provide a third-party, outside perspective and they will bring firsthand experience with the realities of teaching. Both the principal and peer observations will provide targeted feedback intended to promote teacher growth and development. The ultimate goal, again, is to increase student achievement.