Sandoval Seeks Teacher Grading System - 8 News NOW

Sandoval Seeks Teacher Grading System

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Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval delivers his 2013 State of the State address. Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval delivers his 2013 State of the State address.

LAS VEGAS -- Educators could soon face stricter evaluations that links teacher performance to student achievement.

In his State of the State address Wednesday night, Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval laid out his plan for public schools in Nevada.

Educators could be rated A through F.

According to the Clark County School District, the rating system would be a way to reward good teachers, but the Nevada State Education Association said there is still a long road ahead to get Nevada's schools back on track.

Sandoval, in his speech, told Nevadans education is a priority.

"To advance the cause of students we must now turn our eye to the classroom," he said.

An aspect of education reform would include changing how teachers are evaluated.

Lawmakers are working to get final approval on legislation that would grade teachers using specific criteria.

"We will know who is average, above average and below average," school district spokeswoman Amanda Fulkerson said.

But members of the Nevada State Education Association said additional steps must be taken to fully evaluate teachers.

"As far as the data system, when you have teachers in a classroom, that teach 50 kids in a kindergarten, and they don't have paper to give their kids, how is it that you can really evaluate them on the progress they're making, when you're not giving them the tools that they need to be successful?" said Craig Stevens of the Nevada State Education Association.

A Clark County teacher said he feels the new assessments are a positive step that would only help students.

"We want to ensure that our students meet our own standards but also meet standards to compete with students across the country and the world," Chapparal High School teacher Joel Antwi said.

Other instructors said they like the fact the evaluation system is drafted by fellow educators.

"They get it," said Arbor View High School teacher Patrick Cooper said. "They can actually help me to become a better teacher."

The evaluation system is still a few years away before it would be put into place in all Nevada schools.

School district educators said they will be in Carson City for the 2013 state legislature that begins Feb. 3 to help guide that process every step of the way.

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