[Excerpt] This report addresses issues associated with the evaluation of teacher effectiveness based on student growth in achievement. It focuses specifically on a method of evaluation referred to as value-added modeling (VAM). Although there are other methods for assessing teacher effectiveness, in the last decade, VAM has garnered increasing attention in education research and policy due to its promise as a more objective method of evaluation. The first section of this report describes what constitutes a VAM approach and how it estimates the so-called “teacher effect.” The second section identifies the components necessary to conduct VAM in education settings. Third, the report discusses current applications of VAM at the state and school district levels and what the research on these applications says about this method of evaluation. The fourth section of the report explains some of the implications these applications have for large-scale implementation of VAM. Finally, the report describes some of the federal policy options that might arise as Congress considers legislative action around these or related issues.