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T-TESS: Measuring Student Growth

The T-TESS evaluation system for teachers is based on a continuous growth model. Growth includes both teacher and student. Each annual evaluation monitors how the teacher grows professionally as a well as how much the student learns throughout the year. Although teachers have been setting goals since the start of the new evaluation system, the final component, a student growth measure, is now being included as part of your annual appraisal. Districts have the freedom to choose how they will collect this information. One way available to districts is the Student Learning Objective, or SLO.


A student growth component is required for all teachers appraised in the state of Texas.
Texas Administrative Code 150.1001: “Beginning with the 2017-2018 school year, each teacher appraisal shall include the performance of teachers’ students…”


Student growth measures is used to determine how a student progresses as a result of the instruction of a particular teacher. This effectively measures the teacher’s impact on student learning.


SLOs are a process-based student growth measure implemented and rolled out by TEA. They are designed to help teachers plan with the end in mind. The teacher will choose a student objective that has growth targets throughout the year, allowing the teacher to see that students are moving towards an intended goal. A tracker will be used to monitor student performance at the beginning, middle, and end of the year. For more resources and sample SLO’s, you can visit

It is important to note that the teacher will choose the objective measured and the particular class/period of students that will be tracked.



Ultimately, SLOs highlight what teachers already do every day.  They show the deliberate thought process of a teacher as you scaffold learning.

      • Don’t reinvent the wheel
        Choose an objective fundamental to learning: one that you already teach and build upon throughout the year.
      • Team Work Makes the Dream Work
        Consider working with your team or department to develop the SLO that is critical to all students and work through the process together.
      • This is Your Time to Shine
        Be realistic. Choose an objective that is attainable.
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