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  #11  
Old 11-10-2012, 09:00 PM
EdEd EdEd is offline
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Originally Posted by Myrisophilist View Post
Eded, thanks for the MET Project link and the info. Justylet state there was recent legislation passed that requires teacher evaluations to be mostly based on student achievement (yes, it was that broad...whatever "mostly" means) and I have heard nothing about the more sophisticated systems being considered for use. Some states are probably taking the time to make evaluations as fair for teachers as possible, but it's not the case here.
For sure. Yeah, it's like many new initiatives - implementation varies widely. I Just think it's important to distinguish between the concept and it's implementation. So, even if the implementation is bad, the concept may be better. Too bad to hear it's in such a bad state where you are.
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  #12  
Old 11-10-2012, 09:03 PM
EdEd EdEd is offline
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Originally Posted by waterfall View Post
I think most people that are against tenure simply haven't worked for a bad principal and don't really understand the need for it. My last principal would have never, ever fired anyone on the basis that they "spoke up too much" or that she simply didn't like their personality. The general attitude in that school was that tenure wasn't needed. We did have it, but even some of the tenured teachers said they wouldn't mind if it were gotten rid of. They didn't have to worry about being fired for anything other than actual poor performance anyway, so tenure seemed silly to them.

In my new school, it is a whole different ballgame. Tenure allows people the freedom to actually speak up about things that are going wrong in our school. I can't imagine how much worse things would be if we didn't have it. Two of the teachers on my team are extremely experienced and both tenured. I can guarantee that if they didn't have that protection, the P would get rid of them because they speak up. The are both excellent teachers and they really care about the students. We have a population that is over 90% ELL. Both of these teachers also have degrees in TESOL, and they are always speaking up about what's right for ELLs which for some reason admin doesn't want to deal with. One of them is also a union rep and her tenure allows her the freedom to stick up for the rest of us too. She's not afraid to tell admin that it's completely inappropriate to cuss people out at a staff meeting (yes, that happened) or to speak to people the way she does. My admin also decided that the only students allowed to receive intervention are students that are very close to passing the state test (meaning no resources for actual "low" students) and my teammates spoke up about how unethical that was. Even as someone who doesn't have the protection of tenure, I completely support it. If a teacher truly is a "bad teacher", then admin can go through the proper steps to fire them.
I'm not sure that the best way to address problematic administration is through tenure though
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  #13  
Old 11-10-2012, 09:07 PM
EdEd EdEd is offline
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Originally Posted by czaczaadministration will
I disagree. There are certain committees to serve on, conversations to alsoat need to be had, risks worth taking for which tenure affords some protection.
An effective administration will accept and promote this leadership and difference in opinion though. I also compare this with other fields . Most other fields halso have opportunities for committed work, risk-taking, etc, but don'taafford their employees heightened immunity against administrative action.
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  #14  
Old 11-21-2012, 12:18 PM
musevine musevine is offline
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I think that the current system should be revamped... thanks for chiming in!
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  #15  
Old 11-21-2012, 12:31 PM
musevine musevine is offline
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Thanks All!

Gee, I'm lost for words at these insights you've shared and I'm truly grateful. Excuse me for replying to all of you in batch:

@Myrisophilist on #2 -the system really needs revamping; it's quite unethical

@EdEd on #3&4 -Thanks for sharing that info on Metro Project; don't you think there are other factors outside the classroom that affects a student's progress?

@czacza on #5 -it's like saying wine gets better with age..

@brigidy on #7 -my thoughts exactly..

@Accountable on #8 -lucky you..

@waterfall on #10 -it's like separating rotten apples from the good ones

I enjoyed reading from you all. Happy Thanksgiving
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  #16  
Old 11-21-2012, 01:00 PM
teacher girl teacher girl is offline
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I'm not in the classroom, yet... but I think tenure is necessary. I have met principals who would fire a teacher in a hearbeat... for minor indescretions. However, I do think something should be done about a teacher who is not doing their job...

However tenure should stay, simply because of how unfair it would be to fire a teacher based on scores. The teacher isn't 100% responsible for a students learning. Then, every teacher would want high scoring students for job security. And that kind of contradicts the reason why so many teachers teach.
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  #17  
Old 11-21-2012, 01:34 PM
EdEd EdEd is offline
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Originally Posted by musevine View Post
@EdEd on #3&4 -Thanks for sharing that info on Metro Project; don't you think there are other factors outside the classroom that affects a student's progress?
Hey musevine - Happy Thanksgiving to you as well . Yes, I do think there are other variables outside the classroom that need to be addressed. The idea with the MET project was to control for those variables by examining student's progress relative to other students with similar demographic and achievement backgrounds. So, kids from high poverty backgrounds, for example, would be compared with other kids from similar high poverty backgrounds. The idea is that if a group of students made less progress than other kids from similar backgrounds, you could attribute that lack of achievement to variables other than the child's background.

Theoretically, this works. It isn't a perfect correlation, but it works. Practically, however, I've done some further reading (including a critique on the MET report), and have tended to agree with others that a .69 correlation just isn't strong enough to make individual decisions about teachers that are high-stakes. While .69 isn't trivial, and does offer some insight, there are still too many errors that occur with that number. A certain number of teachers scoring in the lowest quartile, for example, will still end up scoring in the highest quartile the following year, and vice versa. Those numbers can be reduced by only examining achievement data over 5+ years, and by trying to identify teachers consistently performing in the bottom, say, 5%, but those restrictions become so cumbersome that they really probably aren't worth the effort at this point. Add into the equation the fact that VAM doesn't tend to work well in a variety of settings (special education, gifted) and tends to not be able to distinguish well between teachers that have different kinds of students (tracked classes in middle school, large number of behavioral issues, etc.), and I think that VAM is a great idea worth further research, but not yet ready for the field.

So, there's my updated thought process!
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  #18  
Old 11-21-2012, 02:35 PM
TeacherGroupie TeacherGroupie is offline
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It strikes me that any SYSTEM that reliably and automatically identifies all the ineffective teachers is probably going to include in its sweep enough teachers who are actually effective that it will leave us squirming.
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  #19  
Old 11-21-2012, 02:43 PM
EdEd EdEd is offline
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Originally Posted by TeacherGroupie View Post
It strikes me that any SYSTEM that reliably and automatically identifies all the ineffective teachers is probably going to include in its sweep enough teachers who are actually effective that it will leave us squirming.
I definitely think that's why human input is important, as well as a balance of tools/sources and checks/balances.
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  #20  
Old 11-21-2012, 04:24 PM
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czacza czacza is offline
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Again, I'm for tenure. Tenure DOESN'T MEAN A job for life, just requires a specific protocol to be followed for getting rid of an ineffective teacher. Most of the new evaluative protocols (Marshall et al) deal with ineffectiveness.

Musevine #15. Are you currently teaching, how much experience do you have? Some wines age to their full potential, others turn to vinegar. Do you be enough experience to know which you will be? Are you in a position to judge? Is anyone?
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