In 2014, Mississippi plans to adopt a statewide teacher evaluation procedure, which was recently developed by the Mississippi Department of Education. The new system will rate teachers by looking at student test score data, as well as the scores teachers receive from observations conducted by administrators. The new system is the first of its kind for the state, which had previously left the process of evaluating and rating teachers largely up to individual districts. The shift to a statewide system comes at a time when at least 30 states across the nation are rolling out new evaluations using more rigorous criteria about what makes a good teacher. A growing body of research indicating that teachers are the most influential in-school factor impacting student achievement has pushed many states to more closely examine how teachers are teaching. Under old systems, the vast majority of teachers were rated satisfactory – even if the vast majority of students were falling behind. The article is in The Hechinger Report.