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CDE review in favor of CITE teacher evaluation tool

CASTLE ROCK – The Colorado Department of Education notified DCSD today that the review of the District’s teacher evaluation tool is finished, with no further action needed by the District.

READ MORE: Colorado Department of Education finds union complaint unfounded

Over the past two years, DCSD has implemented a unique pay for performance system designed to reward and recognize teachers who demonstrate excellence in the classroom. This pay for performance system replaced the previous union negotiated wage scale that did not differentiate based upon performance, but instead based pay on factors not related to performance, such as years of service.

This Douglas County pay for performance system was, in large part, designed by the teachers – and teacher performance evaluations are performed at the school level.

“Pay for performance is crucial to ensuring that we recognize, reward and keep our best teachers,” said DCSD Board of Education President Kevin Larsen. “And it is working: 91% of our teachers were rated ‘highly effective’ or ‘effective’ and our retention rate among that group is 88%. By recognizing and rewarding our best teachers, we’re keeping them right here in Douglas County.”

Earlier this year, union leaders filed a complaint with CDE and demanded the District’s evaluation tool, known as CITE (Continuous Improvement of Teacher Effectiveness), be thrown out. After hours and hours of independent study and review, CDE Commissioner of Education Robert Hammond revealed full support of the DCSD teacher evaluation system.

“Based on our review, we have found the components of CITE to be in compliance with the law and do not have any findings that require further action on the part of the district,” said Hammond.

“We appreciate the thorough and objective review by CDE,” said Larsen. “CITE is a great evaluation tool developed by our teachers, for our teachers.”

CITE is differentiated to meet the needs of different teachers. For instance, an evaluation for a nurse is different than that of a first-grade teacher. Professional development is available to help improve performance based on a teacher’s CITE rating.

CITE is in a continuous improvement implementation cycle. DCSD evaluators participate in substantial professional development and have demonstrated inter-rater reliability. The instrument is in a continual refinement and improvement process involving staff members. CITE features multiple checks and balances – including second look, appeal, level one review and level two review.

To learn more about CITE, visit

July 16, 2014 | By rmbarber | Category: Pay

District News

graduates standing in line outside, smiling

DOUGLAS COUNTY – Graduation rates in the Douglas County School District (DCSD) continue to climb. Data released today by the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) shows the on-time, four-year graduation rate is now 90.4 percent.

DCSD students also made an impressive showing at graduation. The class of 2017 earned more than $82 million in scholarships.

DCSD has one of the highest graduation rates in the Denver metro area. According to CDE, DCSD graduation rates have risen steadily from 81.9 percent in 2009 to 90.4 percent in 2017.

Five female students standing on stage smiling and laughing at the awards ceremony

The top two-percent of female athletes in Douglas County School District (DCSD) were honored at the annual Girls and Women in Sports Luncheon last week at Chaparral High School. This year represented the 30th national celebration of Girls and Women in Sports Day, created to encourage and promote the participation of girls in athletics. The girls who were honored were selected by their school’s coaches, athletic directors and principals for their outstanding achievements.

Superintendent Search text based logo

Working through the recent winter break, the Douglas County School District Board of Education has kicked off its search for DCSD’s next permanent superintendent. Following a thorough vetting of potential search firms, Ray & Associates (no relation to Board Director David Ray) has been hired to conduct the national search. The cost of the firm, excluding travel expenses, is $40,000. The money will come from the school board's budget, which is used for costs such as legal expenses and conferences.