VAM Scores Eliminated in Some States

teacher-23304_1280Performance evaluation are a tricky business.   Arbitrary data systems based on student test scores turn excellent teachers into mediocre ones and vice versa.  Individual judgments can also be wrong, but systems that have multiple components can be reasonably fair.

Some states are dropping student achievement gain scores and are returning to human judgment systems for teacher evaluations.  Which are these forward thinking states?





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A Teacher Speaks Out

change-948016_1280Once in awhile a very powerful message cuts through all of the data.   This Teacher of the Year in Oklahoma tells it like it is.

She is speaking to the Oklahoma legislature, but she could be speaking to Florida’s.  The message is the same; the problems are the same in Florida.

We have teaching testifying in the Citizens for Strong Schools trial that is going on in Tallahassee.  Their voices and yours need to reach everyone.

Read this teacher’s message.  Write your own and send it to me.  Let’s tell it like it is.  See the Open Letter to Oklahoma Voters and Lawmakers.  It tells a story that cannot be ignored.  If we want our schools to be better, our communities have to support ALL of our children or we all suffer.


Florida Gets an ‘F’ Again

FAILED1Which states get it right?  Not Florida.  It was one of eight states that received an overall grade of ‘F’ when its grades were averaged across the categories studied.   The Network for Public Education rated states based on six criteria.

For each category, I combined the percentages of A, B and C grades received across states.  I was surprised at the results.  Relatively few states (11) use test scores to punish students and teachers, but Florida is one of those that do.  You can see the combined percentages (think of them as passing scores) at the end of each of the criteria.

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