CELL at UIndy

Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning

TAP™ Elements of Success

Four Steps for Fundamental Improvement

Many reforms apply a singular focus rather than using a comprehensive approach to improve education. TAP™: The System for Teacher and Student Advancement stands apart from other school reform models by applying four interrelated elements that restructure schools to support teacher effectiveness.


Multiple Career Paths

Opportunities for new roles and responsibilities with commensurate pay

TAP™ tiers the teaching profession into career, mentor, and master teacher levels to allow educators to pursue advanced options depending on their interests, abilities, and accomplishments. As teachers assume new positions, their qualifications, roles and responsibilities increase, as does their compensation. The system encourages excellent teachers to advance professionally and develops expert educators able to support their colleagues.


Ongoing Applied Professional Growth

Job-embedded professional development focused on teacher and student needs

TAP provides a collaborative system of professional development that is student-centered and led by expert instructors. A restructured school schedule provides time during the regular school day for teachers to meet, learn, plan, mentor, and share together. This common time facilitates the learning of new instructional strategies and collaboration, which enables teachers to become more effective in the classroom, leading to increased student achievement.


Instructionally Focused Accountability

Meaningful evaluations based on clearly defined research-based standards

TAP evaluates and rewards teachers for student academic growth. Teachers are held accountable for meeting the TAP Teaching Skills, Knowledge and Responsibilities Performance Standards, which are research-based standards built on 26 indicators and measured through a five-point scale rubric. Teacher evaluations occur four to six times a year using trained and certified evaluators. Following each evaluation, the observed teacher and evaluator discuss strengths and areas for improvement to advance the teacher’s instructional practice. Teachers also are evaluated based on the amount of student learning growth achieved both within his/her individual classroom and the entire school. This comprehensive accountability structure makes it possible to consider multiple measures of teacher effectiveness.


Performance-Based Compensation

Salaries and bonuses tied to teacher roles, responsibilities, instructional performance, and student learning gains.

TAP goes beyond years of teaching experience, degrees, and professional development credits to determine teacher salaries. Teachers receive additional compensation based on new roles and responsibilities, classroom accomplishments, and student performance. Master and mentor teachers receive additional salary increases for assuming additional responsibilities, stepping into a leadership role, and working a longer school year than the typical classroom teacher. All TAP teachers are eligible for financial awards based on the average scores earned through classroom teaching evaluations and student academic gains at both the classroom and school levels.

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