During the first two years of the charter (2010-12), we will receive a total of $600,000 from a federal Public Charter Schools Grant.  We could not have successfully started YPSA without the grant.  In return, the UCSC Board agreed to develop a teacher evaluation program that included student growth as a criteria.

The new evaluation process is based on the work of Charlotte Danielson. Danielson is considered one of the leaders in this field.  Aspire Charter Schools, for example, is using a variation of her process in their new teacher evaluation process that is being piloted this year (2011-12).  We will also use Danielson’s work and customize it to fit the YPSA Charter, just as Aspire customized it to fit their approach.  Our charter is our framework.

Danielson proposes that teaching can be described by 21 elements that fall into four domains.  Danielson’s four domains and 21 elements are listed below. Our work is defining each element in context of the school’s charter.  The goal is to create an evaluation process that essentially becomes a teacher’s guide for going from “good” to “great.”   It is very important that the  new evaluation process helps teachers, both core and enrichment, develop the ability, skills, and attitude needed to successfully implement the charter.  The charter, after all, is the contract we agreed to with the Sacramento City Unified School District Board of Education that led to the creation of YPSA.

The evaluation committee is heavily influenced by the work of Charlotte Danielson.  She suggests that teaching can be described by 21 components that are grouped in four domains.  The four domains and the respective components are as follows:


Teacher Evaluation Project



Planning and Preparation

Component 1a: Demonstrating Knowledge of Content and Pedagogy

Component 1b: Demonstrating Knowledge of Students

Component 1c: Setting Instructional Outcomes

Component 1d: Demonstrating Knowledge of Resources

Component 1e: Designing Coherent Instruction

Component 1f: Designing Student Assessments

Click her for rubric schematic



The Classroom Environment

Component 2a: Creating a Culture of Respect and Rapport

Component 2b: Establishing a Culture for Learning


Component 2c: Managing Classroom Procedures

Component 2d: Managing Student Behavior

Component 2e: Organizing Physical Space






Professional Responsibilities

Component 3a: Communicating with Students

Component 3b: Using Questioning and Discussion Techniques

Component 3c: Engaging Students in Learning

Component 3d: Using Assessments in Instruction

Component 3e: Demonstrating Flexibility and Responsiveness

Component 4a: Reflecting on Teaching

Component 4b: Maintaining Accurate Records

Component 4c: Communicating with Families

Component 4d: Participating in a Professional Community

Component 4e: Growing and Developing Professionally

Component 4f: Showing Professionalism

The new evaluation process at YPSA is intended to guide teachers to become great teachers who effectively implement the charter.  As such, Danielson’s work will be customized to fit the YPSA Charter.  The key is defining each of the 21 elements.