Clips

Late to this, good David Leonhardt column on college.  My take on the same debate here. And here’s public agenda with some brand new survey data on college (pdf).

Kristina Rizga takes a look at teacher evaluation state of play.  She notes that there is no consensus about how much to use test scores.  But there is a consensus that teachers shouldn’t be evaluated on test scores alone.  That doesn’t stop people in the story from declaring that they don’t think teachers should be evaluated on test scores alone. OK, but since everyone agrees and no state is doing that at some point can we stop holding that straw man up?

Great pinots, solid fly fishing, good mountains and now ed reform: Here’s what went down in Oregon.

Insiders say things may be slowing down in Charlotte. And David Griffith reports on the fog of Core….

13 thoughts on “Clips

  1. Linda/RetiredTeacher

    In Los Angeles teachers were evaluated by the Los Angeles Times and publicly labeled as “effective” or “ineffective” based solely on test scores. Understandably other teachers are afraid this will happen to them.

    If teachers are to be evaluated on the basis of standardized test scores, these tests must be:

    Wide-range and able to measure the progress of each child in the class;

    Different each year (no peeking);

    Professionally administered and handled by someone outside the district;

    Designed to measure teacher effectiveness in the opinion of the majority of testing experts;

    Valid and reliable in the opinion of the majority of testing experts.

    Sound expensive? Yes, and that’s just part of the problem.

  2. daprofessor

    hey linda,

    it took me two seconds to debunk your claim that the LA times is making the argument that value added test scores are all that matter. why don’t you go read their web page that features the data:

    within a minute you’ll note the Times FAQs say:

    Do value-added scores tell you everything you need to know about a teacher or school?

    Not at all. Even many advocates of the method say it should count for no more than half of a teacher’s overall evaluation. Other factors might include classroom observations, the quality of students’ classroom work and instructors’ abilities in subjects other than English and math. Similarly, parents looking for a school for their child may also want to consider factors such as the school’s API score, course and extracurricular offerings and their own impressions of the teachers and campus.

  3. daprofessor

    yes they did report value added for profs philly poo

    but linda’s assertion was that LA Times claimed scores could be used as the sole way to assess how good a teacher is.

    my link (from the LA Times itself) proves conclusively that LA Times did not make that argument. LA Times reported test scores. Duh. But they also issued a clear caveat in their FAQs that says test scores should not be seen as the only way to measure teacher quality.

    How does that contradict anything I said?

  4. phillipmarlowe

    From the LATimes:
    Teachers blast L.A. Times for releasing effectiveness rankings
    The Times made public an analysis of L.A. Unified third- through fifth-grade teachers based on student test scores.
    August 30, 2010|By Jason Song, Los Angeles Times
    National and local teachers unions sharply criticized The Times on Sunday when the newspaper published a database of about 6,000 third- through fifth-grade city school teachers ranked by their effectiveness in raising student test scores

  5. phillipmarlowe

    Education Reform Hero Mitch Daniels in reality:

    Louise Cohoon was at home when her 80-year-old mother called in a panic from Terre Haute: The $97 monthly Medicaid payment she relied on to supplement her $600-a-month income had been cut without warning by a private company that had taken over the state’s welfare system.

    Later, the state explained why: She failed to call into an eligibility hot line on a day in 2008 when she was hospitalized for congestive heart failure.

    RELATED

    Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels won’t run for president

    Costa Mesa’s police chief abruptly quits over council’s plan to slash workforce

    Republicans promote Costa Mesa as a pension-slashing leader

    Lopez: In Costa Mesa, are extremists playing politics with people’s lives?

    Senate report: Funds funneled to private contractors in drug war go untracked

    “I thought the news was going to kill my mother, she was so upset,” said Cohoon, 63. Her mother had to get by on support from cash-strapped relatives for months until the state restored her benefits under pressure from Legal Services attorneys.

    Cohoon’s mother, now suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, was one of thousands of Indiana residents who abruptly and erroneously lost their welfare, Medicaid or food stamp benefits after Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels privatized the state’s public assistance program — the result of an efficiency plan that went awry from the very beginning, the state now admits.

    Though the $1.37-billion project proved disastrous for many of the state’s poor, elderly and disabled, it was a financial bonanza for a handful of firms with ties to Daniels and his political allies, which landed state contracts worth millions.

    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-indiana-privatize-20110624,0,3676979.story

  6. daprofessor

    phil,

    are you seriously dense?

    no one in this comment thread ever said that LA Times did not release teacher value added scores. both Linda and I agree that, in fact, they did such a thing. great, thanks for confirming what we all agree on.

    the disagreement is on whether LA Times said that the value added scores they released WERE THE ONLY VALID WAY AND THE ONLY WAY THAT ONE SHOULD JUDGE TEACHER QUALITY.

    I criticized Linda for making that second assertion. I then provided a direct quote from the LA Times FAQs on their Teacher Database which contradicts that notion.

    What have you added to this comment thread that in anyway contradicts my contradiction of Linda?

  7. Linda/RetiredTeacher

    Daprofessor:

    Please read my post again. I did not say that the Los Angeles Times said that teachers should be evaluated solely on the basis of test scores. Actually, they specifically stated that tests should only be one part of a teacher’s evaluation.

    What I said was that the Los Angeles Times rated teachers as “effective” or “not effective” based solely on test scores. If my memory serves me correctly, they did this in 2010. After a barrage of criticisms, the paper later said that test scores should just be one part of a teacher’s evaluation.

  8. PhillipMarlowe

    Again.

    From the LATimes:
    Teachers blast L.A. Times for releasing effectiveness rankings
    The Times made public an analysis of L.A. Unified third- through fifth-grade teachers based on student test scores.
    August 30, 2010|By Jason Song, Los Angeles Times
    National and local teachers unions sharply criticized The Times on Sunday when the newspaper published a database of about 6,000 third- through fifth-grade city school teachers ranked by their effectiveness in raising student test scores

    And

    In coming months, The Times will publish a series of articles and a database analyzing individual teachers’ effectiveness in the nation’s second-largest school district

    http://articles.latimes.com/2010/aug/14/local/la-me-teachers-value-20100815

  9. PhillipMarlowe

    Linda,
    No, daprofessor engages in the typical professional education reformers’ strategy of building straw-men, a practice well-honed by the previous POTUS.

  10. Scott E

    From The Research VS. The Rhetoric by Lisa A. Galley, NJEA Staff of a ETS symposium that included Richard Rothstein, former New York Times national education columnist who currently works as a research associate at the Economic Policy Institute:

    “As Rothstein explained, even if value-added measures are only used for 50 percent of a teacher’s evaluation, it will likely become 100 percent of the trigger for retention and pay decisions made by a supervisor. In other words, if every other aspect of a teacher’s evaluation is satisfactory, but the value-added score is low, those other measures will be deemed unimportant or incorrect. Conversely, if a teacher’s value-added score is high, the administrator will likely ignore other concerns about a teacher’s performance.”

    Maybe the LA Times believes VAM scores should not be seen as the only way to measure teacher quality, but did the LA Times use any factors other than the VAM scores to create its effectiveness rankings?

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