Too many teachers rated effective in new evaluations?

The system was created to make it easier to identify which teachers performed the best so their methods could be replicated, and which performed the worst, so they could be fired.

Most New York City Teachers Score Well On New Assessments.

The New York Times (12/17, Taylor, Subscription Publication) reports that New York education officials released new information Tuesday showing that 90% of “New York City teachers received one of the top two rankings in the first year of a new evaluation system that was hailed as a better way of assessing how they perform.” Noting that the system was envisioned as a way to identify successful teachers’ best practices and to eliminate ineffective teachers, the Times reports that “state officials and education experts said the city appeared to be doing a better job of evaluating its teachers than the rest of New York State.”

        The AP (12/17, Thompson) reports that some education leaders said that the high pass rate of the evaluations may mean that it needs to be improved, noting that this is “the second consecutive year that evaluations gave high scores to the vast majority of teachers while only about a third of students” scored well on statewide tests. Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch said, “The ratings show there’s much more work to do to strengthen the evaluation system.” Meanwhile, the AP quotes outgoing Education Commissioner John King Jr. saying, “I’m concerned that in some districts, there’s a tendency to blanket everyone with the same rating. That defeats the purpose of the observations and the evaluations, and we have to work to fix that.”

        The Syracuse (NY) Post-Standard (12/17) and the Wall Street Journal (12/17, Brody, Subscription Publication) run similar reports.

Source: www.nytimes.com

The education world has turned completely upside down!

  • New teacher evaluation systems are designed to make it easier to fire teachers, not to improve teaching.
  • Can we fire our way to Finland? The same reformers who promoted small schools and larger class sizes have championed the idea that firing more teachers would somehow improve public education. Now, “school systems are stuck with a model designed to trash teachers, while Microsoft employees collaborate and work on teams.” http://www.vanityfair.com/online/daily/2012/07/microsoft-downfall-emails-steve-ballmer
  • The criticism of inflated teacher evaluations centers around the use of value-added measures in calculating final ratings—evaluations have improved while scores have dropped. Read NASSP’s position statement on the use of VAM’s in teacher evalutions. http://www.nassp.org/tabid/3788/default.aspx?topic=Value_Added_Measures_in_Teacher_Evaluation
  • NYC is better at evaluating teachers because NYC has more ineffective teachers?

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