Ideas & Innovations

Analysis: Minneapolis Public Schools

May 04, 2009

In the fall and winter of 2008-09, TNTP engaged in an extensive review of the human capital policies and practices of Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS), in partnership with the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers (MFT) and Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi Foundation For Children. TNTP, in collaboration with MPS and the MFT, collected and analyzed survey and transactional data to explore a range of human capital topics, including: teacher recruitment, hiring, and staffing processes, teacher and principal evaluation processes, teacher and principal pipelines, and teacher retention. The analysis showed that flawed district practices and staffing policies are exacerbating school and teacher instability to an alarming degree, resulting in the loss of quality teachers and creating an untenable level of churn for teachers. MPS must change dramatically and immediately to remain sustainable as a district, especially in an increasingly challenging and competitive environment. TNTP's primary findings included:

  1. Significant instability for teachers and schools, exacerbated by current staffing rules and practices;
  2. Inability to use instructional performance to inform critical decisions because of inconsistently implemented and under-supported evaluation processes; and
  3. Strong agreement from both teachers and principals for the use of mutual consent practices when making staffing decisions around teacher placement. 
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