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Thomas R. Hoerr

Teacher Evaluation and the Whole Child

We measure what we value. This is true in how we spend our time, where we focus our efforts, and how we evaluate our teachers. Believing that educators must embrace the whole child—we must be sure that a child is healthy, safe, supported, engaged, and challenged—then how should that affect our approach to teacher evaluation? Don't misunderstand me: academic skills are terribly important, and teachers, principals, and schools are judged on how children perform on multiple-choice tests. We can mourn that (and I do), but it is a reality. But it can't be the whole reality. As we prepare students to succeed in the real world, not just to do better on their tests next year than they did this year, we must bring a whole child approach to how we view our students.

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