The Answer Sheet: teacher assessment


Posted at 10:02 AM ET, 09/10/2013

Good or bad? New rating system can’t decide about this principal

Three glaring problems with a new teacher evaluation system, including giving two different scores to a single principal.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:02 AM ET, 09/10/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Based on Test Scores, Controversial Educator Assessment, Teacher Assessment

Posted at 06:02 AM ET, 06/26/2013

Should news organizations publish teachers' value-added ratings?

Here's why it was a bad idea for an Ohio newspaper to publish teachers' value-added ratings.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:02 AM ET, 06/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Here We Go Again, Teacher Assessment

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 03/03/2011

Value-added assessment: Theory vs practice

Conflating the importance of teacher quality with the ability to measure it carries big risks, and can lead states, districts and the media to miss the trees for the forest.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 03/03/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Matthew Di Carlo, Teachers | Tags:  la times, la times teacher, los angeles times, los angeles times teachers, los angeles times teachers series, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, teachers, teachers and value-added, teachers database, value added

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 02/28/2011

Debating Michelle Rhee

Here's a look at the two central questions posed by "The Bee Keeper," the new book about Michelle Rhee: Why do D.C. schools perform so much worse than many other big city school districts? Was Rhee’s the right approach to improving the schools?

By Valerie Strauss  |  07:00 AM ET, 02/28/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Michelle Rhee, Richard Kahlenberg | Tags:  michelle rhee, richard whitmire, school reform, slate magazine, studentsfirst, teacher assessment, the bee eater

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/25/2011

Teachers and nanny cams: Compliance vs. trust

Are "nanny cams" in classrooms a great way to evaluate how well teachers do their jobs, or are they manifestations of the notion that we simply don't trust teachers?

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/25/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teacher assessment, Teacher assessment, Teacher assessment | Tags:  evaluating teachers, gates foundation, gates foundation and met project, met project, teacher assessment, videotaping teachers

Posted at 12:35 PM ET, 01/21/2011

Say it isn’t so on IMPACT, Mayor Gray

Here’s why I was so disappointed to a plan by D.C. schools officials to have the flawed IMPACT teacher evaluation system reviewed by a Harvard think tank.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:35 PM ET, 01/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools | Tags:  d.c. schools, edulabs, harvard research, harvard thinktank, harvard university, mayor gray, mayor vincent gray, merit pay for teachers, michelle rhee, performance pay, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/19/2011

Is Rhee's key D.C. reform being tossed?

While Michelle Rhee is busy trying to build up a national organization to take on the teachers unions, back in Washington D.C., where she was chancellor for 3 1/2 years, the new mayor may be on the road to taking apart her signature reform.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/19/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools | Tags:  IMPACT, IMPACT evaluation system, IMPACT teacher evaluation, d.c. schools, kaya henderson, mayor vincent gray, michelle rhee, school reform, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, vincent gray

Posted at 02:00 PM ET, 01/18/2011

Ravitch: The pitfalls of putting economists in charge of education

Diane Ravitch writes, "It is astonishing to realize the extent to which education debates are now framed and dominated by economists, not by educators or sociologists or cognitive psychologists or anyone else who actually spends time in classrooms."

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:00 PM ET, 01/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  diane ravitch, gates foundation, gates-funded project, mike rose, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, value-added, value-added measures

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/18/2011

Videotaping teachers the right way (not the Gates way)

A teacher describes what he says is the right way to videotape teachers to help them improve and explains why he thinks a Gates-funded videotaping project is taking the wrong approach.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  evaluating teachers, gates foundation, gates funded project, gates project and teachers, how to evaluate teachers, larry ferlazzo, teacher assessment, teachers, teachers and gates foundation, videotaping teaches

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 01/14/2011

The biggest flaw in Gates value-added study

Were the conclusions of a major Gates Foundation study on value-added measures to evaluate teachers predetermined?

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 01/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  MET project, MET study, assessing teachers, bill gates, bill gates foundation, gates foundation, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, value-added, value-added measures

Posted at 11:01 AM ET, 01/13/2011

New analysis challenges Gates study on value-added measures

A new analysis challenges a Gates Foundation study said to support the validity of value-added measures to evaluate teachers by using students' standardized test scores.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:01 AM ET, 01/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Research, Research | Tags:  bill gates, gates foundation, gates foundation study, gates-funded research, how to evaluate teachers, teacher assessment, value-added, value-added measures

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 01/09/2011

How to be taken seriously as a reformer (don't be an educator)

In the current upside-down world of education policy, there's one foolproof strategy for being taken seriously as a reformer: Make sure you're not an educator. Here, an educator writes about what counts -- and what SHOULD count -- in the school reform debate.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:30 AM ET, 01/09/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  Illiinois schools, Performance Counts, bill gates, eli broad, jeb bush, mark zuckerberg, obama and schools, obama daughters and school, oprah, performance counts, president obama and daughters, school reform, sidwell and obama, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teachers

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/28/2010

Ravitch takes stock of education in 2010

Education historian Diane Ravitch looks back at the education world of 2010.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  diane ravitch, education policy, teacher assessment, teachers

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 12/23/2010

Test scores can't prove whether teacher experience matters

People such as Bill Gates and Arne Duncan who say teacher experience doesn't matter much are relying on standardized test scores for evidence, even though the tests fail to provide adequate evidence for drawing such a conclusion.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 12/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  arne duncan, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teacher evalution, teachers, test scores

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/13/2010

A Felliniesque education story

A veteran teacher writes that if today's education debate seems Felliniesque, don’t worry; you have not lost your senses. "What is apparent, however, is that the people who run the show have."

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/13/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  david steiner, fellini, how to assess teachers, merryl tisch, new york board of education, nyc schools, releasing test scores, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teachers, test scores released

Posted at 02:10 PM ET, 12/09/2010

Teachers: What we need to do to fix schools

Fourteen teachers from urban schools around the country worked for a year to study how to improve troubled schools. Here are the results.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:10 PM ET, 12/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers, Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  larry ferlazzo, quality teachers, school reform, teacher assessment, teacher development, teacher planning, teachers, teachers leadership network, urban schools, urban teachers

Posted at 03:29 PM ET, 12/08/2010

Absent teachers reserve 'crisis' created by Klein, Bloomberg, union

A teacher explains how all sides are responsible for the mess surrounding New York City's "absent teacher reserve: "If this self-inflicted "crisis" were given to a business management class as a case study, it's likely that they would conclude that the negotiators on both sides of the table were idiots."

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:29 PM ET, 12/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  cathie black, cathleen black, joel klein, new york city schools, nyc schools, teacher assessment, teacher tenure, teachers

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/07/2010

Assessing teachers without fetishizing test-based reforms

An educator writes that policymakers are fetishizing student scores on standardized tests and using them as a crutch rather than turning to sensible solutions to improve public schools. There are better ways to assess teacher quality, he says.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/07/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  assessing teachers, los angeles times, no child left behind, race to the top, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, test scores, value added

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 11/24/2010

The mismatch between Duncan's words, actions

A veteran teacher writes an open letter to Education Secretary Arne Duncan, saying that the mismatch between Duncan's words and actions makes "a real consensus impossible."

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 11/24/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody | Tags:  anthony cody, arne duncan, education secretary, evaluating teachers, school reform, standardized tests, teacher assessment, value-added

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 11/17/2010

The sad story of an L.A. school labeled 'failing'

A teacher at a Los Angeles middle school writes about why her school was just declared to be "failing" and why the designation is patently unfair: "In today’s world of testing and sanctions, best efforts are irrelevant if scores do not increase at a fast enough rate."

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 11/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  failing schools, la schools, los angeles unified school district, public school choice, schools, teacher assessment, teachers, value-added measurement

Posted at 10:57 AM ET, 11/16/2010

Experts: How to overhaul teacher ed (and my problem with their report)

A major report released today calls for overhauling teacher education programs. It offers a number of strong recommendations, but, unfortunately, continues a reliance on standardized tests.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:57 AM ET, 11/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests, Standardized Tests, Standardized Tests | Tags:  blue ribbon panel, blue ribbon panel report, education programs need overhauling, effective teachers, preparing teachers, report on clinical practice, report on teacher education, report on teacher preparation, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teacher ed, teacher education, teacher education programs, teacher education through clinical practice, teacher preparation, teacher quality

Posted at 09:40 AM ET, 11/12/2010

What’s wrong with releasing names and scores?

A teacher writing about plans by the NYC Department of Education to release teachers’ names and value-added ratings to the press, says: "Is this sheer stubbornness on the part of school leaders, or do they not understand the harm this would cause?"

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:40 AM ET, 11/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  diana senechal, la times, la times teachers, new york city schools, new york times, new york times teachers, nyc doe, school reform, schools and teachers, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, teachers, the los angeles times, value added, value added assessment

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 10/23/2010

Building teacher accountability from the ground up

Educator Anthony Cody spells out the practices that help improve instruction and that build teacher accountability into schools.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 10/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  accountability, anthony cody, national certified teacher, school reform, teacher assessment, teacher magazine, teachers

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 10/19/2010

Reduce standardized testing to improve accountability, school quality

FairTest's Monty Neill writes that reducing the amount of standardized testing, and lowering the stakes connected to the result will result in more accountability and school quality.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 10/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  arne duncan, quality reviews, race to the top, school-based assessments, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, testing

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 10/06/2010

Ravitch: Why teachers should never be rated by test scores

Education historian Diane Ravitch writes: "...Value-added assessment should not be used at all. Never. It has a wide margin of error. It is unstable. A teacher who is highly effective one year may get a different rating the next year depending on which students are assigned to his or her class. Ratings may differ if the tests differ. To the extent it is used, it will narrow the curriculum and promote teaching to tests. Teachers will be mislabeled and stigmatized. Many factors that influence student scores will not be counted at all."

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 10/06/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  diane ravitch, how to assess teache, l.a. times, l.a. times database, los angeles times, ravitch book, rigoberto ruelas, school reform, teacher and suicide, teacher assessment, teacher commits suicide, teacher database, teacher evaluation, teachers, test scores, value added

Posted at 01:03 PM ET, 09/26/2010

Will Rhee be a footnote in school reform history?

Like Hugh Scott, the first African American superintendent in Washington D.C., Michelle Rhee will be a footnote in a doctoral dissertation on the D.C. schools a generation from now, educator Larry Cuban writes.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:03 PM ET, 09/26/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools | Tags:  $100 million and newark, $100 million newark schools, adrian fenty, gray and schools, larry cuban, mark zuckerberg, michelle rhee, newark schools, rhee and fenty, rhee and vincent gray, school reform, teacher assessment, teachers, will rhee stay, zuckerberg and newark

Posted at 11:46 AM ET, 09/02/2010

How much power should we give to ed data?

A veteran teacher writes about what gets left out in today's education world where reformers are obsessed with "data" and test scores.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:46 AM ET, 09/02/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  evaluating teachers, how to evaluate teachers, power of data, teacher assessment, value added, value added and teachers

Posted at 01:15 PM ET, 05/11/2010

Horse, then cart, on teacher evaluation -- Hess

American Enterprise Institute's Frederick M. Hess writes about why Colorado's school reform bill is in one sense a giant step forward, but is overreaching in an "impatient rush to 'fix' teacher quality in one furious burst."

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:15 PM ET, 05/11/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests, Standardized Tests | Tags:  Colorado and teachers, Colorado school reform, Frederick Hess, Rick Hess, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teachers

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 04/28/2010

How to measure student growth

By Lisa Guisbond. Growth models are pitched as a thoroughly modern, scientific way to .answer the age-old parental question: “What did you learn in school this year, my dear?” It seems reasonable enough: Test students at the beginning and the end of the year and measure the “growth” in test scores to see if student achievement is improving. Given the narrow and limited nature of the data used to measure this growth, however, there’s often less than meets the eye in the results. Fortunately, there are better, if little known or understood, ways of both measuring and stimulating real growth in learning.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 04/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers, Teachers, Teachers, Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  Race to the Top, growth models, how to evaluate teachers, nclb, no child left behind, schools and growth models, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, teachers