The Delaware Teacher Growth and Support System (DTGSS) is the state’s new teacher evaluation system currently being piloted in select Delaware schools. DTGSS will replace DPAS-II for teacher evaluation beginning in fall 2022. School specialists and administrators will remain on the current DPAS-II system.

DTGSS was designed to use ongoing observation, feedback and support to drive teacher growth. In DTGSS, teachers consistently reflect on current practice as well as set new goals in a system of continuous improvement that ultimately benefits students.

The DTGSS process is designed to provide teachers with opportunities to receive ongoing feedback and support aligned to a set of professional growth and student learning goals.

Delaware Teacher Classroom Observation Framework

Four performance areas drive DTGSS. Each performance area outlines a key element of teaching and learning that is critical to student success.

  • Performance Areas 1-3 – Captured in the Delaware Classroom Teacher Observation Framework.
  • Performance Area 4 – Includes both professional growth goals for teachers as well as student learning goals.
    • Professional growth goals – Set by teachers in collaboration with their administrators. Based on past performance and current roles. Serve as the foundation for feedback and support to drive teacher growth and support over the course of the year.
    • Student learning goals – Set by teachers and leaders every fall. Based on pre-assessment data. Used to assess the extent to which students learn in the classroom.

Educators: For additional resources, access the DTGSS Schoology group (Schoology code: X8WB-ZKQJ-M585J) or email NewTeacher.Evaluation@doe.k12.de.us.

  • Fall conference: To be held by Sept. 30 at the start of each school year. Teachers identify Professional Growth Goals and Student Learning Goals.
  • Mid-year conference: Held between Dec. 1 and Feb. 2 for teachers and their administrators to:
    • Share and discuss feedback from observations to date
    • Review progress toward Professional Growth Goals
    • Adjust Professional Growth Goals or the type of Professional Growth Plan
    • Identify additional support or resources needed to meet goals
  • Spring conference: To be held by May 15. Prior to this conference, administrators rate each Performance Area based on the DTGSS observation framework and the process for Student Learning Goals. The spring conference allows teachers and their administrators to review:
    • Student Improvement Goals and final ratings for each goal
    • Indicator and Performance Area ratings assigned by the administrator based on evidence from all observations and the summative rating for the year on the three Performance Areas in the framework
    • Progress on Professional Growth Goal(s) and priorities for the following school year

Under DTGSS, administrators use frequent, brief in-class observations to collect evidence of teaching and learning in action. Administrators sort this evidence to the indicators in the observation framework to determine strengths and growth areas as well as to inform end-of-year evaluation ratings. Each observation is followed by a debrief meeting to allow administrators to provide teachers with regular feedback based on their classroom practices.

All Delaware teachers receive at least four classroom observations a year. Each observation is expected to last at least 15 minutes. This minimum is meant to allow the administrator to differentiate their approach to observation and feedback to provide teachers with the level of support that they need. This could mean that some teachers who may be struggling in a particular area receive more feedback and support than other teachers.

At the end of the year, administrators examine all evidence collected over the course of the at least four classroom observations. Then, the administrator uses that evidence to assign a Level of Performance for each Indicator and Performance Area. The Level of Performance rating for each of the four Performance Areas determines the overall summative rating that is assigned to each teacher at the end of the school year.