Individualized Support that Promotes Professional Growth
UNO is committed to ensuring that each teacher continually develops and grows as a professional. As a result, UNO takes a unique approach to professional development by staffing 1 – 2 Master Teachers at each campus. The Master Teacher spends 100% of her/his time supporting the development of each teacher and is at the core of the professional development model. All teachers begin the year by developing a Professional Growth Plan, which highlights the areas on which the teacher would like to develop. Through individual and small-group meetings held throughout the year, the Master Teacher provides differentiated feedback to teachers gathered through classroom observations, lesson plan review, unit plan review, and assessment review.
Network support for School Leaders
In order to ensure all UNO staff continues to build professional capacity, UNO has designed unique opportunities for school leadership teams to reflect on and strengthen their practice. Master Teachers engage in bi-monthly meetings, where all Master Teachers come together to collaboratively learn about relevant topics. Academic Directors collaborate regularly with one another and central office staff to discuss important information. In addition, there is a Central Academic Team that provides ongoing support related to policy, school leadership, and the management of staff.
All UNO employees hold themselves accountable to the achievement of all students. As a result, UNO has designed a unique framework that allows the quantitative (student achievement results) and qualitative (evidence gathered by Master Teachers and Academic directors) to be taken into consideration during the evaluation of a teacher. UNO STRIVE is the culmination of the performance measurement tools that the Network and School Academic Teams have developed and implemented throughout the last five years. UNO SRTIVE provides a fair, clear, transparent, and comprehensive system through which to measure teacher performance and reward and recognize high performing teachers. Additionally, UNO STRIVE links teacher performance measurement to performance support, allowing professional development to be tailored to each teacher’s unique growth needs.
Master Teachers and Academic Directors are also evaluated by examining the qualitative and quantitative components of their job. Two evaluations for all roles take place each year – the mid-year evaluation is formative, and the end-of-the year evaluation is summative. All components of job performance are taken into consideration when creating evaluations.