All Along The Watchtower.

Pretty much non-fiction.

Pretty much non-fiction.

So…I am being evaluated this year, as a teacher. I’m not against being evaluated, in fact, I think it is a very good idea. The current evaluation system, though, is a huge hassle for both administrators and teachers. It is “paperwork intensive” while simultaneously being “paperless.” The entire system has moved online, and as a result, has more steps in it than it would if an actual person had to make copies of forms to fill out.

The actual process, truth be told, is way behind schedule. I understand that…the amount of “paperwork” on my side was pretty @##%ing large. The administrator in charge of me has an equivalent amount of “paperwork” multiplied by the number of teacher that they need to evaluate. Add to that the simple task of doing their usual day to day activities, and it is pretty understandable how an administrator might become swamped by the sheer volume of material.

Honestly, my evaluator is the kind of person that I would want. “By the Book” to be sure…that’s the way of things at the Edu-Mountain. Despite being “By the Book”, this is a person with the same love of literature that I have, and a person that is truly “no nonsense.” I generally look forward to my interactions with this Edu-Lord, who has not forgotten what it meant to be a roll book carrying teacher. We have had informal talks about the process, and are of very much the same mindset.

For the next week or so, I will be having “informal observations.” To me, this is the most honest part of the process. My evaluator can come in at any time, and check on any part of the educational process that they want. It’s a legitimate, unscripted spot check, the kind of thing that in my opinion, any teacher should always be okay with. It is why I actually keep my door physically open at all times, with the exception of security lockdowns. In my opinion, I should ALWAYS be subject to such a spot-check, and it is where I will get the bet and most on-point feedback.

In two weeks, I will have my official “Formal Observation.” This is at a scheduled date and time, with the intention of showcasing my “best practices.” Today, I actually spoke to my administrator, and explained that my basic lesson plans for the next several weeks will be highly formulaic, so they could in fact just pick a time at their leisure. This was confusing…most teachers want to pick a “best class” and specific lesson. When I explained that any time should be equivalent, because I should always be teaching a high quality lesson, and put my “money where my mouth was” on evaluation dates, this earned a “high five.”

Again…I think my evaluator is a pretty fine administrator.

Still…the art is on point. The entire process is odious and time consuming…for the Cosmic Watcher sent to observe, and for our hero the Edu-Knight, who has to keep it in mind while doing the rest of her superhero tasks. Not a subtle metaphor here, True Believers.

Still experimenting with digital speech balloons and lettering. My jury is currently out on the subject. It DOES let me focus more on the drafting and art, and less of the text, which is positive. Still not sure how much I like it.

Next Issue: WASC!


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