In this week’s summary, I highlights two types of articles: Those describing best practice, and others reporting on the state of education with regard to teacher evaluation. We want our teachers to grow as professionals, yet at the same time we expect them to ensure that every student reaches proficiency in the core areas of instruction. Are these two areas of focus mutually exclusive? I conclude that strong school leadership is essential if we want to see both come to fruition.
“The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again.” – Steve Jobs, in his 2005 Stanford University graduation speech, about being fired from Apple
High-achieving teacher sues state over evaluation labeling her “ineffective” by Valerie Strauss (Washington Post, October 31, 2014)
A New York City educator with an impeccable teaching record was recently given a low rating by the state’s evaluation system. The reason for the discrepancy appears to be the use of value-added measures, or VAM. They compare this year’s standardized assessment results with past year’s students, as well as other grade level learners. The article notes that this method of evaluation is less than reliable, a position supported no less than by the test developers themselves. In the past, other quality educators have received low ratings…
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