Leadership · Curriculum · Lifelong Learning

I’m reflecting on some great conversations with classmates, colleagues, and friends today. After many AHA moments, hypotheses, and healthy debates, I’ve finally come to a place of peace… And bold prediction:

The digital portfolio will replace traditional teacher evaluation tools. Soon. 

But it’s way more than just replacing a tool.

This is an entire shift in mindset.

Here’s why I believe in educators owning their learning in the digital portfolio process.

Watch this progression from Teacher Evaluation to Teacher Portfolio:

Teacher Evaluation Teacher Portfolio
Product Process
State/District Mandated Learner-Owned
Administrator-Paced  Teacher-Driven
Sitting Across  Sitting Adjacent
Checking Boxes Choosing Experiences 
Required Artifacts Inspired Reflections
Meeting Deadlines Approaching Small Wins
Final Grade Ongoing Feedback
Not Looked For/Not Observed It’s All Here
Licensure-Dependent Passion-Dependent


  • #HamstraHighlights readers know how much I value reflection in the portfolio process, especially when it includes efficient curation to demonstrate meaningful learning to meet standards.
  • Another bold prediction: Every observation will include a visual artifact, such as a picture, video, tweet, or other social media or intranet capture, to be specifically archived with a school and standard hashtag, and to be easily searchable and recalled during post-observation meetings. Soon.
  • Yes, teachers could present the same evidence to meet the same minimum licensure requirements in the evaluation tools as in the portfolio process. The big difference, though, lies in the power of reflection. The portfolio platform provides an incredibly powerful, meaningful, ongoing space in which to learn and grow.

Perhaps, the beauty of transitioning from traditional teacher evaluation practices and tools to digital portfolios is the analysis of our systems in place, as well as the continuous drive to make teaching and learning better for all.

What’s your bold prediction? 

One Reply to “Transforming Teacher Evaluation”

  • I can 100% get behind this prediction! I hope that when the shift comes, teachers are given time at work dedicated to building and updating their portfolios.

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