Student achievement will now account for 50 percent of the evaluations given to principals in Chicago Public Schools.
The student achievement portion of the new evaluation will be twice the minimum recommended by a 2010 state law. The remaining half of the evaluation will be based on appraisals of leadership.
If students do well compared with national standards, principals will be rewarded with bonuses and other incentives under the evaluation system. Officials, however, didn't make clear Thursday what will happen if students don't improve their scores.
"We're finally at a point where we're holding all of our team leaders to a system of accountability for academic success for our kids," said schools CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett. "We really think that because the principal is a key lever in student achievement and one of the key levers for our advancement of our academic agenda, that people should be held to the highest standard."
The evaluations, which begin this year, will also make use of another piece of data CPS already has started collecting — whether students are on track for graduation, starting in the third grade. Until now, district officials have tracked only freshmen for graduation.