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April 4, 2023

NELW 2022 Panel: Video as an Alternative to In-Person Evaluations

(Educators featured: Assistant Superintendent, Dr. Stephanie Hofer, Project Coaches, Hannah Karl and Erica Sanders)

Last October, our partners at Insight Education Group brought together hundreds of educators from across the country to network, share, and learn—with the goal of working together to improve outcomes for all students.

During the annual conference, we hosted a panel discussion with our friends from MSD of Decatur Township (IN) and discussed their five-year district journey of using video-based professional learning and instructional coaching

The fifth and final use case we discussed was using video as an alternative to in-person evaluations.

The pandemic changed the ways schools and districts operate around the world, and MSD Decatur Township did not go unscathed. In March of 2020, assistant superintendent, Dr. Stephanie Hofer, and her superintendent, Dr. Matt Prusiecki, had to get creative when it came to evaluations, and fast. In the video discussion, you’ll learn how video not only came to their rescue during the pandemic, but how video is now integrated into the way their district operates when it comes to many facets of teacher development, including evaluation. 

Within the video evaluations portion these key points are discussed:

  • How creative video solutions can stick 
  • Getting your teacher’s union onboard is key to a successful program
  • Giving your teachers agency over their evaluations is empowering 
  • The value in being solution-oriented, the future is never known 
  • Embracing the power of video use in teacher evaluations

Evaluations can be a dreaded topic among educators. Without trusted practices and a transparent district culture, teacher development tends to suffer. As you heard, Decatur took a tough situation (a pandemic) and a triggering topic (evaluations) and found a creative solution that appeased their teachers: video as an alternative to in-person evaluations. The pivot was transformative.

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