Thursday, August 15, 2013

Bloomboard: Free User-Friendly Teacher Observation-Evaluation Web Tool

One of the hottest topics in educational leadership right now is teacher evaluations and observations. Finding an effective tool to do this is problematic, especially when trying to find the right solution that gives teachers the right kind of feedback and support. Some states, like my own, have custom-designed observational tools already in place, but I am sure there are school leaders looking for tools to collect teacher evaluation data. BloomBoard is a answer for those looking for such an observational tool, and best of all, it is now free and used by over 100,000 educators.

In a recent post on the blog Getting Smart, BloomBoard is described as a tool for providing “school districts and states with user-friendly tools to collect educator effectiveness data---and then recommend personalized training for each teacher based on his or her particular professional needs.” BloomBoard is an observational-evaluation tool that allows school leaders to identify teacher weaknesses and then provide customized support to help that teacher improve.

BloomBoard Interface

I recently took BloomBoard for a trial spin, and here’s some of the positive features I immediately noticed:
  • Simple to use interface. Some evaluation software, in its zeal to provide users with tons of options, makes the user interface complicated and non-intuitive. Not so with BloomBoard. Upon logging in, the interface is sleek and intuitively simple to use.
  • There are options to sign in as an administrator, instructional coach or teacher.
  • The learning curve for BloomBoard appears to be quite simple. Those who consider themselves “technologically challenged” will find this software easy to use.
  • Best of all, once the observation is complete, the administrator is provided with a page full of resources to address specific needs identified.
BloomBoard is a solution that school leaders will find quite useful in helping teachers grow in their practice. If North Carolina did not have a state mandated solution, I could positively see using BloomBoard to help teachers grow professionally.

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