AP 422 - Evaluation of Principals and Vice Principals (School Administrators)

The division believes that outstanding schools require excellent school administrators. In order to achieve and maintain such a high level of quality, the division deems it advisable that school administrators be evaluated in a fair, objective and straightforward manner so that their performance may be as effective as possible for their schools and the school division as a whole. 

The performance of individual school administrators will be evaluated in accordance with the beliefs and procedures that follow. 


  • School-based administrators are competent, accountable and committed to improving their leadership skills through a collegial process of administrator growth, supervision and evaluation.
  • The primary responsibility of administrators is to practice and promote instructional leadership to support and nurture the existence of high quality learning opportunities for students.
  • As teachers, administrators have been and will continue performing their responsibilities at a level of performance that meets or exceeds the Teaching Quality Standard.
  • An essential responsibility of all administrators is the constant improvement of professional practice through continual reflection and professional growth.
  • It is the professional responsibility of administrators to recognize and share their strengths in a collaborative manner with other professional staff for the benefit of staff and students.
  • The division has the responsibility to provide administrators with opportunities to improve their professional practice.
  • The cultural values of respect, honesty, ethical leadership and professional conduct are the cornerstones of any performance appraisal system.
  • Supervision and evaluation guidelines and procedures will be applied fairly, reasonably and consistently in keeping with the principles of natural justice and due process.
  • Due process in employment decisions involves the exercise of professional judgment supported by fair and reasonable assessment and informed decision-making.
  • An administrator whose performance does not meet the acceptable standard has both a right and an obligation to collaborate and to determine his/her professional growth needs.
  • An administrator on a Plan for Improvement must be provided with a fair and reasonable opportunity to improve his/her performance and become successful.
  • The division has the right and the responsibility to terminate the employment, designation or assignment of administrators who have been given a fair and reasonable opportunity to improve but whose performance continues to be judged to be less than the acceptable level.


For the purposes of this procedure, school administrators shall be used to refer to the group including principals and vice principals located at school sites, as well as equivalent positions seconded to Central Office (e.g., District Principal).


  1. Purposes of Evaluation
    1. To enhance and improve student learning;
    2. To promote, achieve and maintain a high standard of administrator performance; and
    3. To facilitate the professional growth and leadership development of school administrators.
  2. Nature of Assessment
    The evaluation process for all school administrators is an improvement-oriented process that should be primarily self-directed and ongoing rather than cyclical in nature.
  3. Responsibility for Evaluation
    1. Evaluation of principals is a responsibility of the Superintendent or designate.
    2. The principal is responsible for evaluating the performance of the vice principal(s).
  4. Performance Criteria
    1. The evaluation of the principal shall be based on specific performance criteria which derive primarily from the responsibilities of the principal outlined in Administrative Procedure 420 (i.e., Appendix 420A – Principal Quality Practice) and the duties stated in the School Act.
    2. The evaluation of the vice principal shall be primarily based on the performance responsibilities or job description for the administrative position according to the Principal Quality Practice.
  5. Administrator Professional Growth
    1. Each administrator shall prepare and implement an annual Professional Growth Plan.
    2. The Professional Growth Plan may be discussed, shared or reviewed with the administrator’s immediate supervisor and/or a colleague of choice, and shall be submitted to his/her immediate supervisor by November 15 of each year for information and verification of compliance with this administrative procedure.
    3. The Professional Growth Plan shall:
      1. Reflect goals and objectives based on an assessment of professional needs by the individual; and
      2. Show a demonstrable relationship to the Principal Quality Practice, the Teaching Quality Standard and duties of the principal as stated in the School Act.
    4. Prior to the end of the school year, each administrator shall submit to the immediate supervisor a written report indicating the extent to which the goals of the plan have been met.
  6. Administrator Supervision
    1. Supervision of school administrators by the immediate supervisor shall include:
      1. Providing support and guidance to administrators, including assisting administrators to become familiar with the professional responsibilities as outlined in the Teaching Quality Standard, Appendix 420A – Principal Quality Practice, as well as pertinent sections of the School Act.
      2. Observing, receiving and sharing information from any source about the quality of instruction provided to students and/or administrative practice an administrator provides to the general school community; and
      3. Identifying the behaviours or practices of an administrator that:
        - Are deserving of recognition; or
        - Might indicate the need for evaluation.
    2. The immediate supervisor will participate in supervision through:
      1. Regular communication;
      2. Ensuring that the administrator’s annual Professional Growth Plan is received, reviewed and discussed in a collegial manner;
      3. Frequent informal observations of instruction and effective leadership;
      4. Gathering information regarding:
        - The manner in which an administrator interacts with students, colleagues, parents and community; and
        - The administrator’s leadership in any aspect of school activity.
      5. Facilitating and supporting opportunities that enable administrators to collaborate with colleagues for purposes of professional growth.
  7. Principal Evaluation
    1. The Superintendent or designate will conduct evaluations of principals who are eligible for permanent certification, who the Superintendent or designate, through supervision, has reason to believe may not meet the Teaching Quality Standard or the Principal Quality Practice, or for any other purpose mutually agreed to in advance by both parties.
    2.  A recommendation by the Superintendent or designate that a principal be issued a permanent professional teaching certificate, be offered employment under a continuing teaching contract or be offered a continuing administrative designation shall be supported by:
      1. Results of one (1) or more written evaluations of the school administrator;
      2. A signed recommendation by the Superintendent or designate that the principal:
        Consistently uses the knowledge, skills and attributes specified under the Teaching Quality Standard in ways that effectively help students learn;
        - Consistently demonstrates sound professional judgment in all matters related to teaching;  and
        - Consistently meets the Principal Quality Practice.
      3. A signed declaration by the principal as to:
        - The efficacy of his/her professional development activities throughout the school year; and
        - His/her commitment to teaching practice and ongoing professional growth in keeping with the Teaching Quality Standard and the knowledge, skills and attributes for interim certification.
    3. Written evaluation reports involving decisions related to employment, certification, administrative designation and/or competence shall be signed and dated in triplicate (original and two (2) copies) in the presence of both parties. Distribution of the copies shall provide for:
      1. The retention of one copy by the principal;
      2. Placement of the original signed document in the principal’s Central Office professional personnel file.
    4. Where, as a result of a written evaluation, the Superintendent or designate determines and states, in writing, that a principal’s performance does not meet either the acceptable Teaching Quality Standard or the division’s Principal Quality Practice, the Superintendent/designate shall specify in the same written evaluation:
      1. That a Plan for Improvement will be developed for the principal;
      2. That a committee be formed, charged with the responsibility for developing such a plan, consisting of:
        - The principal;
        - A collegial representative identified by the principal;
        - The Superintendent/designate who authored the evaluation; and
        - Another administrator selected by the author of the evaluation;
      3. The date by which the principal must identify his/her collegial representative; and
      4. The date by which the development of the Plan for Improvement shall be completed.
    5. Plan for Improvement shall be in writing and authored by the Superintendent or designate identified in 6.4.2 and shall serve as the written Notice of Remediation to the principal. It will identify:
      1. And reference the expectations of teachers/administrators as defined by the Teaching Quality Standard and the Principal Quality Practice;
      2. Those practices and/or behaviours that do not meet the Teaching Quality Standard or the Principal Quality Practice;
      3. The objectives (mutually established) for improvement;
      4. Those remediation strategies which the principal has been advised to pursue in support of attaining the objectives identified;
      5. Specifically how the attainment of the objectives will be determined;
      6. Timeline(s) regarding when corrective activities and interventions will occur and the date that the Plan for Improvement will end (such date not to exceed one school year); and
      7. The various consequences which may result should the evaluation report at the conclusion of the Plan for Improvement indicate that the Teaching Quality Standard or the Principal Quality Practice have not been satisfactorily achieved.
    6. Data collection will be implemented as per the appropriate sections of the Plan for Improvement and in accordance with Notice of Remediation.
    7. The final written evaluation report arising from a Plan for Improvement and a Notice of Remediation shall include a statement that states explicitly that the principal does or does not meet the Teaching Quality Standard and the Principal Quality Practice. This report shall be presented in triplicate to the principal at a mutually arranged time. Both the original and the two (2) copies are to be signed and dated in the presence of both parties and distributed as previously described in 6.3 of this administrative procedure.
    8. If the report determines that the principal meets or exceeds the Teaching Quality Standard and the Principal Quality Practice, the principal will return to a program of ongoing annual professional growth and supervision.
    9. If the evaluation indicates that the principal does not meet the Teaching Quality Standard or the Principal Quality Practice, the Superintendent shall make appropriate employment recommendations to the Board.
  8. Evaluation Process: Other Administrative Positions
    The evaluation process for vice principals shall involve the same or similar procedures as outlined for principals.
  9. The Code of Professional Conduct
    The Code of Professional Conduct of the Alberta Teachers’ Association shall be adhered to in the evaluation process.


School Act, Section 20, 61
Cross Reference: Administrative Procedure 420 – Role of the Principal
Administrative Procedure 421 – Role of the Vice Principal