Belize: Evaluating teacher performance to improve the quality of education

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The education system in Belize faces several challenges, including the production and use of reliable data for steering the education system. Piloting requires the collection and analysis of information relating to the evaluation of the teachers' performance; setting up a system for evaluating teacher performance has therefore been a priority in recent years.

The CIEP, with its expertise in the field of evaluation of educational public policies, assisted the Ministry of Education of Belize in 2017 and 2018 in the development and implementation of a teacher performance evaluation mechanism. It was intended, in the long term, to provide the teacher training institutes and the central administration of the Ministry of Education with useful information to improve the quality of the training of primary school teachers.

The project "FST" (Feedback System for TEIs), funded by the Inter-American Development Bank, consisted in creating and implementing a system for monitoring and evaluating the performance of teachers during their first years of practice in order to improve their training in Teacher Education Institutes (TEIs). Through reflexive practice, it aimed at improving the information system, performance analysis and decision-making processes, strengthening the capacity of TEIs by improving the quality of services and training products.

In addition to information relating to the biennial evaluation of teachers, the monitoring and evaluation system also collects results of the entrance examination into the profession, the external evaluation of the teaching delivered in the teacher training institutions, observations and comments from students, parents and school principals, as well as the labor market integration rate of graduates.

The project involved all stakeholders (TEIs and members of the Ministry of Education) to define – in a participatory manner – the data to be collected in the system as well as the products of the analysis. This approach has been adopted to ensure the success of the Feedback system. In this sense, the project appears as a model to follow in the field of management of education system.

The compilation functions of the monitoring and evaluation system have been developed and tested to check that they are working properly. Stakeholders have been trained in the use of the system. Through the database query process, they can now generate statistical reports that are useful for both monitoring the quality of services and training products, as well as analyzing teacher performance and the quality of the decision process.