Thursday, March 15, 2012

Into The Shredder

My husband, a product of the private sector, keeps insisting teachers should not be exempt from evaluations (the stuff the media is hyping teachers want) as everyone gets evaluated.  I've tried zillions of times to explain that it is not an exemption from evaluations we want, it is a valid evaluation. 

He doesn't get the invalidity of using test scores because he doesn't know how invalid they are.  He doesn't get stacking classes because he has never had to deal with an administrator who does this year after year.  And, he has seen me take the lowest kids in the school term after term, get many to pass and still have the worst statistics and he thinks this is valid because the schools will know the population I worked with.
He claims teachers haven't come up with a better system than the one being offered, but he is wrong there too.  Years ago, when Principals and Assistant Principals were real master teachers they could judge who was good and who wasn't.  Now, most of these people wouldn't know a good teacher if they feel on one.  They mistake noise for group work and chalk and talk, often necessary, for non student involvement.  My first AP was one of the nastiest, most hated people in the school.  But, she knew how to teach and she rarely went after someone who was good.  She is the one that taught me and countless others how to teach.  Data wasn't her motivator, learning was.  My husband claims that private industry has lots of newbies and incompetents in charge too.  It is the wave of the future.  I don't understand why, instead of trying to change this, he wants to see it accepted and spread around. 

Perhaps he is right and it is too late to go back and get people who actually know something to be in charge.  But, it is not too late to change the evaluation system.  If it was up to me, I would survey parents and children and find out what they think of their teachers.  Good surveys could be worded in a way to get honest answers.  When the majority come out good, or bad, that should say something.  Administrators should also have a say.  I would even go so far as to let security guards and school aides chime in.  They often know more about what is going on than the people in charge.  There should also be peer evaluations.  Put all these together and you will get a well rounded picture of teacher.   And then, the evaluation could be made.

No system is perfect.  Every industry has people in it that don't belong.  My husband is wrong.  Teachers want and need evaluations.  The evaluations are what make us better.  They point out or strengths and our weakness and show us the areas we need to improve upon.  Showing me test scores does nothing.  They can't tell me where I feel short, only that I might have.

Cuomo is doing the public a major disservice pushing his agenda as it will do nothing to help the children of New York State.  Spending Democratic Party contributions to air his harmful commercials is wrong.  Contributions were not meant for this and these commercials should stop.  I just got a letter asking for my donation.  It went straight into the shredder.


Sweet Girl Tracie said...

Very well said.

And I have also had a conversation with my friend, The Sanchize which is similar to yours with your husband. The Sanchize, like your husband also do not get or understand why using data and test scores is an unreliable method to evaluate teachers. In fact, The Sanchize said the exact same thing as your husband in regards to the private sector industry.

*Also, I saw that commercial last night and it made me want to barf. I definitely despise Cuomo more that Bloomberg at this point. He is holding the cards now.

Anonymous said...

My son the lawyer says in his firm the only thing that matters is how many hours you bill and and how many new clients you bring in. He has the option of not bringing in a new client whose case he does not like. He has the option of dropping a client who is not following advise or being disruptive.

Teachers are stuck with the hand they are dealt. I am glad no art teacher had to be rated on the fact that I still draw like a 3 year old.

I never head the word STUDY spoken by all these educational experts and reformers. That is all I heard in my house growing up, Neither of my parents went past the ninth grade. If I said no homework they said well then open a book and study. The reformers are putting no pressure on the students or their parents. What a joke. I am sure Bloomberg and Cuomo heard the word study from their parents.


Anonymous said...

Are you sure he's your husband???

Has he not been reading your blog all these years??????

Today my sister who lives in NJ asked me how Cuomo was doing? She first asked her husband who told her to ask me?

My response: He's a bastard!!

I am so glad I didn't vote for him or that other idiot!!

jwg said...

I'd be evaluating my marriage at this point!

Pissed Off said...

Marriage and husband are great. This is just one issue he does not get. No need to rethink anything.