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Old 01.11.2011, 03:26 PM   #1
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This issue is getting a lot of slack, especially here in LA where out local Teacher's Union (which I am defacto a part of) is vociferously speaking out against efforts by the feds, by the White House, by the governor, but the CA legislature, by the bitch ass mayor of LA, to include aspects of standardized student test scores in teacher evaluations which determine ALL (even veteran) teacher's job placement and security, and are conducted yearly and bi-yearly across the county and state. The issue is getting blown way out of proportion. Firstly, there is a running presumption that teachers, specifically here in California and LA are not properly or even routinely evaluated, which is absolutely and blatantly false. Teachers face many many evaluations, from the principals and administrators of the school/district, from the state, from the feds, from the unions, evaluations are critical aspects of teachers' lives and careers. Our job security is always on the line based on the fickle observations of various people who can sometimes have unilateral authority in make-or-break decisions..

But these evals tend to work and do their job, it keeps teachers on our toes, it keeps the administrators heavily involved in the classroom on a day to day basis, it establishes and maintains a fluid relationship between the two, it lets teachers know administrators know and see the day to day realities of the classroom and also gives administrators this peak into the classrooms to be able to make better managerial and curriculum decisions.. in other words, evaluations already work just fine. Can they be tweaked and made better, more effective and efficient? Of course! as they should be, but does including often misinformative standardized student test scores from yearly tests?

no..

In fact, we probably should throw out these tests all together! They are hardly representative of over-all student progress, comprehension, or competency, in fact they can often be quite the opposite. We all know the experience of just sitting there, zoning out, and filling in bubbles at random, even drawing patterns and designs or spelling out words with the bubble answer sheets. Teachers know this, students know this, administrators know this, unions know this, practically everybody but Barack Obama and Mayor Villagaraigosa were aware of this, and big surprise, these guys have little to know knowledge or experience of the field of public education!

The LA Times doesn't help, they against respectful requests from both the District and the Teachers' Union published teacher/student test scores which led to a lot of misconceptions in the public, misinterpretations by the public, and even a suicide by an multiple aware winning teacher who was ostracized over a misinterpretation of the data from her classes last year. Her evals were shining, it was just a mix up but there are a lot of unnecessary community backlash at her district and she folded under the pressure.. (rip)

Again, these tests are not very representative of anything other than the classroom management ability of adults to get kids to take these tests, and yet paradoxically we reiterate often to them that these tests do not affect their grades or their school records or their college potential, only can harm us. The kids that want to stick it to the teacher often purposefully do bad on these tests as a protest (which they have the right to do by the way).. Kids should be able to express themselves with out it necessarily harming their teachers and schools. Even the kids who take the tests seriously, are not necessarily going to do their best for several reasons, and this further exasperates the problem with these standardized tests.. The numbers from these tests are to be interpreted ONLY by expert, experienced educators who know all the parameters, all the variables, all the errors, and can better assess what they actually tell about our public education. Maybe these numbers should play some roll in evals, but not the 30 to even 50% (!!) that is being suggested! That gives to much power arbitrarily to administrators and deviant/protesting kids and puts to much pressure on teachers to get kids to pass a single test a year, rather then learn and grow on their own terms..

what do y'all think about this issue of standardized student tests and teacher evaluations?
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Old 01.12.2011, 07:01 AM   #2
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I have never taken a standardized test to evaluate a teacher....I've only filled out surveys. But regardless I have never "stuck it" to the teacher cause I didn't like them or whatever but this is pretty awful.



plus....I hate standardized tests period.
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Old 01.12.2011, 11:52 AM   #3
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The Ownership class is going after the last unions - the teachers being one of the largest - they want to destroy all social organization that does not roll up to transnational corpations. They are doing the same thing in NYC, trying to release inane evaluations that are riddled with errors, but Bloomie seems determined to do this.
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Old 01.12.2011, 02:03 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by EVOLghost
I have never taken a standardized test to evaluate a teacher....I've only filled out surveys. But regardless I have never "stuck it" to the teacher cause I didn't like them or whatever but this is pretty awful.



plus....I hate standardized tests period.

the tests are not teacher evaluations, they are the familiar standardized bubble tests on course content standards such as much competency or history or reading comprehension. The part which plays into teacher evals is to rate teachers not only by their peer evaluations from principals and lead teachers and administrators, which is the current format, but also to include the scores students get on these yearly tests to evaluate teacher success.. But this does not tell a single thing about the actual day to day classroom of that teacher, only how things went that single day are days the test was taken..

What about the kids that are just having a bad day? Those who say fuck it? Those who don't care? Those who want to purposely spite the teacher? Those who just don't do well under pressure? This is precisely why we have used standardized tests for decades, but NEVER thought of using them as individual teacher evaluations or teacher accountability. These have been traditionally used to identify school or district or state wide trends and averages. This is like using student GPAs to evaluate teachers, which is not fair at all, because some kids are bound to get Cs one way or the other and grades do not always tell the success of a teacher in teaching or mentoring kids..

Quote:
Originally Posted by tesla69
The Ownership class is going after the last unions - the teachers being one of the largest - they want to destroy all social organization that does not roll up to transnational corpations. They are doing the same thing in NYC, trying to release inane evaluations that are riddled with errors, but Bloomie seems determined to do this.


Amen Amen. In NYC they are pretending to have some success, but the specific techniques of Bloomberg are not what is successfully, its just been the infusion of attention and money which has brought recent success, the NYC school system was not broken, it was just broke (much like here in California)
The Shitstem uses public education to manipulate and brainwash entire generations of americans, they want teachers to become automatons to the shitstem's mantras..
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Old 01.13.2011, 06:00 AM   #5
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^ guhh...that reply to Tesla quite discouraged me from continuing my schooling to become a teacher.
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Old 01.13.2011, 11:48 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by EVOLghost
^ guhh...that reply to Tesla quite discouraged me from continuing my schooling to become a teacher.

well if thats all the discouraged you then perhaps you shouldn't teach in public schools. The blatant, authoritarian, brainwashing control of the system is a basic, everyday aspect of working in public schools, its the more day to day beaurocratic, classroom management, real life soap opera drama, playing nice with your co-workers, multiple tasking time ten thousand that really makes the job a bit more stressful, the whole working for the devil thing you sort of get used to, probably what the Germans did. I mean, we live in an evil, greedy capitalist society, where don't you work for the devil
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Old 01.14.2011, 10:44 AM   #7
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...and Chris Christie, New Jersey's governor, often babbled as the GOP prez candidate in 2012 (never happen, he's too fat) is determined to do the same, adamant that promised teacher layoffs be based on "merit" not tenure. he just wants to get rid of the most well paid teachers with the most experience. and then steal their pensions.
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Old 01.14.2011, 04:12 PM   #8
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politicians and TV commentators and OP-ed writers do not quite know how to do a teacher's job, and so the problem is that there are too many generals at the bargain table
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