We investigate sources of variation in teacher evaluation ratings across classrooms, schools, and districts. We show that assignment to high achieving classrooms increases teacher evaluation ratings. We also document significant variation in the sensitivity of performance ratings to value-added measures of teacher effectiveness across districts. Consequently, the probability that high or low performing teachers, as measured by value added, receive the highest or lowest evaluation ratings differs considerably across school districts. Our findings suggest that statewide policies that attach high stakes to performance evaluations are likely to have different consequences across schools and districts.
Citation: James Cowan , Dan Goldhaber, Roddy Theobald (2018). An Exploration of Sources of Variation in Teacher Evaluation Ratings across Classrooms, Schools, and Districts. CALDER Working Paper No. 140 618.