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State limits weight of previous year's test scores for some teacher evaluations


ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico — Districts are no longer required to evaluate first-time teachers based on test scores from the previous year.

The Albuquerque Journal reports (http://bit.ly/1IVEaag) the state's public education department announced Monday that the exemption makes the evaluation process fairer for new teachers by replacing student improvement with observation, attendance data and other factors.

The state is applying the new criteria to last year's 1,876 new teacher evaluations, which the education department says will bring up 166 teachers' scores and downgrade 31.

Districts can also weight observation and attendance data or student improvement in evaluations for teachers in subjects without standardized testing, like music.

Albuquerque Teachers Federation president Ellen Bernstein says this recent concession doesn't help a majority of teachers.

The federation is behind a lawsuit challenging the evaluation system, announced in 2014.

Information from: Albuquerque Journal, http://www.abqjournal.com

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