What is the difference between the Formal Observation and the Growth Plan Visit?

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The Growth Plan visit gives the administrator the opportunity to observe a portion of a lesson and to provide feedback related to the Instructional Growth Objective, as well as other aspects of teaching.  There is no formal conference required for this observation, and the teacher is not rated on the Focus Elements for this observation.  The visit may be scheduled, or unscheduled.  

The Formal Observation is an opportunity for the administrator to observe an entire lesson.  This observation is always scheduled, and prior to the observation, the teacher should provide the administrator with a copy of the lesson plan for the day of the observation.  The administrator and teacher will meet prior to the lesson to discuss the plan, and will have a second conference following the lesson observation to discuss the observer's notes, applicable student work, next steps, etc.  The administrator will provide a rating on each of the 7 Focus Elements for this lesson, based on the evidence collected during the formal observation process.