Recommended Guidelines and Procedures for Requests to Observe Classrooms

 

Administrative Memorandum 21-002

TO:      Principals and District Directors

FROM: H. Larry Moore, Deputy Superintendent

RE:       Recommended Guidelines and Procedures for Requests to Observe Classrooms[1]

DATE:  August 31, 2020[2]

Remember, as a principal, you do have the discretion to deny a request to observe a class, but discretion should be used depending upon the nature of the request. Be sure to ask the person making the request; “Why do you want to observe the class or classes?” and “Is there a problem?” The purpose of asking is to be sure the observation is focused on the particular needs of the person making the request and the student.

 

Meet with the individual prior to scheduling an observation. If you agree to allow the visit(s)/observation(s) be sure to explain the following:

 

  1. The individual must check in at the School Office prior to the
  2. An assistant principal or other responsible staff member will accompany the observer while they are on
  3. The person accompanying the observer should take objective notes regarding what occurs during the visit. The notes should be maintained for possible review in the future.
  4. No recording or recording devices are allowed during the
  5. No interaction with the teacher being observed is allowed. No interaction with the students is allowed, not even a child of the visitor/observer.
  6. Scheduling the time and day of an observation is at the discretion of the
  7. As a rule, observations should be limited to 50 minutes per subject matter and may occur more than once per semester at the principal’s discretion. This guidance should be applied equally to all visitors.
  8. Keep the best interest of students in mind at all times.

 

[1] Section 5.10 of Article 5 of the Jackson County Education Association Master Contract states, Observations of a teacher’s class by persons other than school administrative/supervisory personnel shall be allowed only after consent has been granted by the principal and the visit scheduled with the teacher. Such observations shall in no way disrupt the classroom instruction/program. This will in no way limit the Education Practices Commission and Accrediting Agencies from observing teachers, programs and facilities.

[2] This Memorandum supersedes prior Memorandums #13-017 (10-15-12) and #19-014 (1-16-19).