January 17, 2016
Today, Douglas County Parents (DCP) announced their support for a Douglas County Board of Education Resolution addressing the amount of time teachers spend on face-to-face instruction rather than paperwork.
This resolution, to be introduced at the January 19 board meeting by newly elected school board director and former principal David Ray, directs the Superintendent to conduct an immediate study analyzing the amount of time DCSD teachers currently spend on tasks that are not considered face-to-face instruction. Examples of these types of activities are designing and completing new student progress reports, uploading “evidence” of professional competence into the online teacher evaluation tool, and training on the use of the teacher evaluation tool.
This resolution was created in response to concerns that these types of activities take away from valuable time spent on face-to-face instruction, and may have a negative impact on educational opportunities for DCSD students. According to the resolution, “a teacher survey independently conducted by Strategies 360 in 2015 found 92% of survey participants state that they are unable to complete work within the normal work day and 96% do not feel that the district has a culture that makes for a positive work environment.” In addition, “the 2015 TELL Colorado survey found 60% of teacher survey respondents do not feel that the teacher evaluation process improves instructional strategies.”
The resolution further directs the Superintendent to place a moratorium on any new initiatives that may add additional time to teachers’ non-instructional expectations until the survey can be analyzed.
“Teachers in our district have reported frustration and concerns that they are being asked to spend a significant amount of time on activities that do not directly benefit students,” said Meg Masten, spokesperson for DCP. “In order to encourage and ensure a positive working environment in our district, it’s important that the teachers who are engaging with our kids on a daily basis feel supported and heard by their elected school board members. Additionally, if these types of activities are impacting their ability to teach effectively, it is critical that we take a good hard look at what we are asking of them.”
About Douglas County Parents:
DCP is a growing local volunteer advocacy group made up of over 1600 parents, teachers, students, and community members of all political affiliations, ages and professions who seek to maximize learning opportunities for all DCSD students, achieve district-wide fiscal responsibility, and ensure that all voices are heard and respected. All facts we share are backed with documentation garnered through the school district and Colorado Department of Education websites and publications, Colorado Open Records Act requests, and attendance at a variety of meetings. Please contact our spokesperson, Meg Masten, at firstname.lastname@example.org for updates and statements relating to DCSD issues. You may also find more information on our website.