SMU CORE CLASS Observer Job Description

Help Improve Early Childhood Quality Become a CLASS Observer
SMU CORE CLASS Observer Job Description – 2022-2023

What is CLASS?

CLASS stands for Classroom Assessment Scoring System. The interactions teachers have with children impact learning, development, and even lifelong achievement. CLASS is the observation tool developed to assess these interactions: from infant care through 12th grade. (

How Can You Help?

Establishing a common framework for measuring quality is key to improving early learning classroom quality. Currently, Dallas ISD and Dallas Head Start programs are using CLASS to improve quality. SMU’s CORE (Center on Research and Evaluation) has a large team of CLASS Observers. You can help expand that framework throughout the community by becoming a local certified CLASS observer for both public and private early childhood programs.

How to Become a Certified Observer?

You become certified on the CLASS tool through training and a reliability assessment. This process helps you reliably code classrooms and, in turn, helps educational leaders make informed decisions about their programs. During the intensive training, you will:

  • Learn about the CLASS measure and the ways it assesses effective teacher-child interactions
  • Practice observing and coding interactions
  • Prepare for the CLASS reliability test

Required Training Dates

  • August Dates to be determined (You do not need to pay for this training.)

Job Qualifications

  • At least three years of work experience, preferably with children or in educational settings.
  • Must have own transportation and be comfortable driving to all parts of Dallas.
  • Must be able to work 3 – 5 days per week from 7:45 - 3:00 from mid/late August through mid-May.
  • Must be able to work independently, be assertive and confident initiating conversations and emails with teachers about coordinating and completing observations at schools or virtually.
  • Willing to be flexible and “go with the flow.”
  • After thorough training, it is essential that you are well-equipped to trust your decision-making abilities.
  • Pass two background checks - One required by SMU and another required by Dallas ISD (You will not have to pay for these.)

Additional Information

Being a CLASS observer with CORE is important work!

  • Each observation lasts two - four hours total.
  • Observers must attend a kindergarten– 3rd grade CLASS training session and pass the certification test.
  • Compensation is approximately $100 per “observation bundle.” (Observation, scheduling, submitting data)


If you want to make an impact on early childhood quality by being a CORE CLASS observer, or if you have any questions about the position, contact Dawn Levy at