published Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

More than 60 Nashville teachers face termination

More than 60 Nashville teachers could be fired this fall for low-performing state evaluation scores under a new policy orchestrated by the director of schools.

The Tennessean reports that Metro school officials said at a school board meeting this week that 195 out of about 6,000 Nashville teachers got a score of 1 out of 5 on state-mandated evaluations during the 2011-2012 school year. Sixty-three of those teachers are currently employed.

For the first time since Tennessee adopted a controversial teacher evaluation system two years ago, Schools Director Jesse Register is preparing to use its data as a reason to remove low-performing teachers.

The evaluation system uses subjective in-class observations for half of its scoring criteria, and student growth and achievement for the remainder.

Consecutive scores of 1 for back-to-back years would warrant dismissal under Register's plan. Evaluations from the 2012-13 school year are still under review.

"No one in the school district takes the dismissal of a teacher lightly at all," said Katie Cour, Metro's executive director of talent strategy. "It will be a thorough process."

Officials expect to know the exact number of teachers who might be dismissed in the early fall. Terminations would be subject to school board approval.

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