Texas Texas Evaluation and Support System (T-TESS)
WHAT IS T-TESS? - The Texas Teacher Evaluation and Support System (T-TESS) is a system designed by educators to support teachers in their professional growth. T-TESS includes three components:
1) Goal-setting and professional development plan
2) The evaluation cycle (including: pre-conference, observation, post-conference)
3) Student growth measure
T-TESS strives to capture the holistic nature of teaching – the idea that a constant feedback loop exists between teachers and students, and gauging the effectiveness of teachers requires a consistent focus on how students respond to their teacher’s instructional practices. For those reasons, each of the observable domains in T-TESS focuses on teachers and students rather than separating them out into separate domains. Ultimately, T-TESS is a process that seeks to develop habits of continuous improvement, and the process itself best leads to that outcome when appraisers and teachers focus on evidence-based feedback and professional development decisions based on that feedback through ongoing dialogue and collaboration.
The recommended system encourages annual evaluations comprised of multiple informal observations and walkthroughs and at least one formal observation. These collective observations, along with the end-of-year conferences with appraisers, function as an integrated system to provide actionable, timely feedback, allowing teachers to make efficient, contextually-based professional development decisions that lead to growth – both teachers and students. Throughout the school year, teachers collaborate with their observer and/or appraiser to discuss teaching strategies, best practices, and techniques for effective instructional planning and execution of lessons.
T-TESS aligns with the Texas Teacher Standards (TAC, CHAPTER 149, SECTION 149.1001) and is intended to be used for continuous professional growth through ongoing feedback and support which results in refinement of knowledge, skills, and practices that ultimately impact student performance.
For additional information on the Texas Teacher Evaluation and Support System (T-TESS), access the Texas Education Agency (TEA) sponsored website at https://teachfortexas.org, or download the T-TESS resources linked below.
Download the Guidebook - This guidebook was designed to provide district leaders and teachers with a quick reference about T-TESS. The following pages provide brief descriptive summaries about the essential aspects of T-TESS, district policy considerations for implementing T-TESS, and the purpose and goals for those implementing T-TESS. Included are comments and suggestions that reflect the best practices and insights collected from the practical experiences of district personnel who were integral to the implementation of T-TESS during the pilot year. References to additional resources that support T-TESS implementation are also included
Download the T-TESS Rubric - The T-TESS Rubric includes four domains:
3) Learning Environment
4) Professional Practices and Responsibilities
The domains and correlating dimensions are shown in the chart. Individual rubrics are established for each dimension of the T-TESS Rubric to include specific descriptors of practices for each of the performance levels – distinguished, accomplished, proficient, developing, and improvement needed.
For more information on the T-TESS Rubric, access these self-paced online training modules provided by the National Institute for Excellence in Teaching (NIET) in conjunction with TEA. You can also access the self-paced online training modules tied to each dimension of the T-TESS Rubric by using the links provided below.
- Standards and Alignment (Dimension 1.1) The teacher designs clear, well-organized, sequential lessons that reflect best practice, align with the standards and are appropriate for diverse learners.
- Data and Assessment (Dimension 1.2) The teacher uses formal and informal methods to measure student progress, then manages and analyzes student data to inform instruction.
- Knowledge of Students (Dimension 1.3) Through knowledge of students and proven practices, the teacher ensures high levels of learning, social-emotional development and achievement for all students.
- Activities (Dimension 1.4) The teacher plans engaging, flexible lessons that encourage higher –order thinking, persistence and achievement.
Professional Practices and Responsibilities
- Chapter 149, Subchapter AA. Teacher Standards | .docx | .pdf
- Chapter 150, Subchapter AA. Teacher Appraisals | .docx | .pdf
- Teacher Goal-Setting and Professional Development Plan Overview | .docx | .pdf
- Teacher Goal-Setting and Professional Development Plan Process | for teachers | for appraisers
Appraise Setup - Beginning of Year for Appraisers
Goal-Setting and Self-Assessment Overview - For Campus Administrators