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    I am in Texas, also. New teachers are probationary and must have an annual evaluation for the probationary period-2 or 3 years depending on district. After that, once every 3 years. These are formal evaluations. In my district at least, we pick the day and time for the formal evaluation. My principal likes to do an unplanned walk through sometime shortly after school starts just to see if everybody's up and running. She just stays a few minutes. Since this is a small campus and we are all a bunch of gossips, news travels fast. AFter the first one, nobody is surprised about her visit. We have been forewarned. But she is welcome anytime. She is likely to drop in at anytime to bring some mail, ask a question, give a message. Those who do a good job don't fear her visits. She's pretty good at what she does, and she just expects the same from us. Unlike the poster mel, my district does not sign anyone except the administrators and maybe the athletic director to multi-year contracts. We are all on one-year term contracts. My whole campus had our 3-yr. evaluation this past school year. I put mine off every time for some reason. This year, it was Easter week and I still hadn't done it. I went to my principal to ask if it was okay to do a particular math lesson the next day or two because it involved candy which is a no-no except on party days. I was planning to do this lesson the morning of the party, so I figured, why not? She said, sure, what time? and suckered me into doing that lesson for my formal eval. Sneaky little devil, she is. But it was a great lesson, the kids enjoyed it and I got a great evaluation to boot.

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