The PDAS system requires a minimum of one observation of at least 45 minutes, plus additional observations and walk-throughs as necessary and teacher input in the form of a Teacher Self-Report. Under certain conditions, information can also be received and used from third-party sources to determine a teacher’s overall yearly scores. 1. The formal observation: A formal observation must be at least 45 minutes in length unless the teacher and the appraiser have mutually agreed to several mini-observations, which must add up to a total of 45 minutes or more. The agreement must be in writing. The observation can be scheduled or unscheduled at the discretion of the district; however, if evaluations are scheduled for some teachers, they must be scheduled for all teachers. In Fort Worth, teachers must be given notice of the observation at least two days before the week of the observation. 2. Walk-throughs: The use of walk-throughs to determine a teacher’s summative score is the major difference between the PDAS and the old system. The PDAS encourages and nearly requires walk-throughs during the school year. An evaluator can conduct walk-throughs and additional observations as he/she deems necessary. Walk-throughs are used to gather additional information for Domains I-IV. 3. Teacher’s Self-Report: The teacher’s Self-Report must be completed and reviewed by the appraiser at least 2 weeks (10 working days) before the SUMMATIVE conference. This information is used to determine scores for all domains, especially Domains V-VIII. 4. Cumulative data: This is information that is gathered throughout the evaluation period. It can come from walk-throughs or even third-party sources. This information must be factual, written, and given to the teacher within 10 days of the appraiser’s knowledge of the information. This includes information from any third-party source, including parents. Cumulative data which can impact the classroom performance scores, Domains I-IV, can include walk-throughs and even assessments of general student work over the year. Cumulative data gathered outside the classroom impacts Domains V-VIII.
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