Principal FAQs

 Principal/Assistant Principal Evaluations Overview

The Ohio Principal Evaluation System (OPES) was collaboratively developed by Ohio superintendents, school administrators, higher education faculty, and representatives from Ohio’s administrator associations. It was designed to be research based, transparent, fair and adaptable to the specific contexts of Ohio’s districts (rural, urban, suburban, large, and small).

OPES is a standards-based integrated model that is designed to foster the professional growth of principals in knowledge, skills, and practice.  The model provides tools for assessing and monitoring leadership performance.  It is recommended that there be consistency in the use of the components employed across all principals in the district. 

The evaluation of principals and assistant principals should be conducted by superintendents or designees who have been trained and are credentialed to evaluate principals.  The evaluation should be tailored to the duties and responsibilities of principals and assistant principals based on the Principal Performance Rubric (see detailed information provided under RUBRIC). Evaluations are based on the collaborative relationship between the evaluator and the principal and provide a detailed view of performance, with a focus on specific strengths and areas for improvement.

THE OHIO PRINCIPAL EVALUATION SYSTEM COMPONENTS

The OPES Model includes:

  • Principal Performance on the Standards
    • Professional Growth Plan including Goal-Setting or an Improvement Plan
    • Formative Assessment of Principal Performance based on the Ohio Standards for Principals
  • Student Growth Measures

The Final Summative Rating:

Principal performance is determined by using a Principal Performance Rating Rubric consisting of four rating categories with indicators based on the standard elements from the Ohio Standards for Principals.  The evaluation process requires the evaluator to use and record evidence gathered in multiple ways (professional growth/ goal-setting, formative assessments, observations, conferences, professionalism) to determine a Final Summative Performance Rating.

Annual Evaluation

Evaluation Process

Rubric

Student Growth Measures

Credentialed Evaluators


Annual Evaluation

    How often are principals or assistant principals evaluated?

    Principals and assistant principals are evaluated annually through a written evaluation process. In a year that the principal’s contract is not due to expire, there will be one evaluation and a written report. In a year the principal’s contract is due to expire, there will be at least a preliminary evaluation (sixty days prior to action by the board) and a final evaluation, and a written report including the superintendent’s intended recommendation to the board regarding the contract.

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Evaluation Process

    What is the evaluation process for principals and assistant principals?

    The Framework for the evaluation of principals is the same as the framework for teacher evaluation; 50% based on principal performance, and 50% based on student growth measures. The evaluation will measure principals’ effectiveness in performing the duties included in the job descriptions. ODE has developed the Ohio Principal Evaluation System (OPES) which may be used by LEAs for this purpose. The procedures are based on principles comparable to the teacher evaluation policy adopted by the board, and are tailored to the duties and responsibilities of principals and the environment in which they work. An evaluation shall be considered by the board in deciding whether to renew the contract of employment. However, the establishment of an evaluation procedure will not create an expectancy of continued employment.

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    Are directors/supervisors of Education Service Centers/ Joint Vocational Schools and assistant principals evaluated under the Ohio Principal Evaluation System (OPES)?

    Administrative titles vary greatly within the state. Thus to answer the above question, focus not on the administrative title, but rather on the role and alignment (if any) to the Principal Performance Rating Rubric, which is based on the Ohio Standards for Principals. When making determinations regarding an administrator’s requirement to be evaluated under the principal evaluation system, answer these important questions:

    1. Is the administrator serving as an instructional leader?
    2. Do the duties of the administrator fall into at least two of the five principal standards?
    3. Does the administrator evaluate multiple staff members?

    Only those administrators meeting all three criteria above would be evaluated under the principal evaluation system, including student growth measures.

    Administrators who would not be required to be evaluated under the principal evaluation system include those who do not fit all of these considerations above. These administrators: may have limited contact with teachers and/or students; have narrowly defined roles and administrative responsibilities that do not directly relate to the principal standards; do not provide instructional leadership; nor do they evaluate multiple teachers.

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    What are the timelines for notification of contract renewal?

    The principal/assistant principal is deemed reemployed unless given written notice of the board’s intention: 1) not to reemploy on or before June 1st of the date that the contract expires, or 2) the employee notifies the board in writing to the contrary on or before June 15th.

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Rubric

    What Rubric will be used to evaluate principals and assistant principals?

    The Ohio Principal Performance Rating Rubric is based on the Ohio Standards for Principals and will be used to determine ratings on each of the five standards. The Rubric has the same four rating categories as the teacher rubric: ineffective, developing, skilled, and accomplished.

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    How are assistant principals evaluated and how is the rubric used?

    Assistant principals are evaluated on the Ohio Principal Performance Rating Rubric based on the Ohio Standards for Principals.  However, their job descriptions may be more narrowly defined by the duties and responsibilities they are assigned.  For most assistant principals, at least Standards 3, 4 and 5 are applicable.

    If there are duties that an assistant principal performs that do not fall within these standards, a district may make a local decision to use additional alternative evaluation components.  These additional components would not be entered into the eTPES system.

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    Can LEAs use their own locally developed rubric for principal evaluations?

    Yes, but the rubric used must be aligned to the Ohio Principal Performance Rubric, and contain the four rating categories with similar indicators of performance.

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Student Growth Measures

    What are the student growth measures for principals?

    Student growth measures as developed by ODE are designed to be similar to teacher evaluation student growth measures. ODE recommends that LEAs consider a combination of measures from these categories: building level value-added, average of ODE-approved vendor assessments, and locally determined measures. For more information, see the Ohio Principal Evaluation System Model on the ODE website Principal Evaluation.

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Credentialed Evaluators

    Do evaluators of principals need to be credentialed?

    Yes, evaluations are conducted by the Superintendent or designee, and the evaluator must be credentialed. Principals who evaluate assistant principals must also be credentialed. In order to be credentialed, the evaluator must attend an ODE-sponsored two-day training and pass an online assessment.

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    How frequently do evaluators need to pass a test in order to evaluate principals?

    Evaluators re-calibrate two years from the date of successful passage of the OPES assessment.  Evaluators can find the expiration date on the current certificate of achievement issued through the Ohio portal at the National Institute for Excellence in Teaching at https://www.nietbestpractices.org/ohio.  The certificate with expiration date can be viewed or reprinted at any time.

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Last Modified: 2/14/2014 12:20:08 PM