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Senate OKs bill altering Ohio teacher evaluations

– A bill reducing the number of state-mandated evaluations required for well-rated public school teachers has unanimously cleared the Ohio Senate.

The proposal was prompted by educators’ concerns that Ohio’s new evaluation rules require more classroom observation sessions, reports and conferences than can be reasonably handled by existing staff.

State Sen. Randy Gardner of Bowling Green sponsored the measure, which passed Wednesday and now heads to the Ohio House.

Under an evaluation law that kicked in this year, principals must perform two 30-minute classroom observations each year for all teachers, bestowing ratings of accomplished, skilled, developing or ineffective. Once rated accomplished, teachers can be evaluated every other year.

Gardner’s proposal says both accomplished and skilled teachers need only be evaluated every three years. It makes other adjustments to intervening evaluation measures.

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