EDUCATION

New Va. teacher-evaluation guidelines approved

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - The Virginia Board of Education has approved a set of revised guidelines that school divisions can use to evaluate teacher performance.

The board on Thursday adopted uniform teacher performance standards and evaluation criteria. The guidelines include a model teacher-evaluation system that school divisions can put in place in time for implementing performance-pay incentives for the upcoming school year.

The new guidelines officially take effect July 1, 2012. But the state Department of Education is encouraging school divisions to adopt the guidelines before that.

Virginia has rolled out a pilot teacher merit-pay plan, inviting 57 districts that have struggling schools to apply for $3 million in total state funding for 2011-12. At least 40 percent of a teacher's performance evaluation will be tied to student academic performance.

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