Saturday, February 16, 2013

LAUSD's John Deasy Wants Test Scores to Count for 30 Percent of Teacher Evaluations

He'll be firing a lot of teachers. Basing teacher evaluations on student performance blames teachers for student learning problems over which they have little control.

At LAT, "Deasy wants 30% of teacher evaluations based on test scores":
L.A. schools Supt. John Deasy announced Friday that as much as 30% of a teacher's evaluation will be based on student test scores, setting off more contention in the nation's second-largest school system in the weeks before a critical Board of Education election.

Leaders of the teachers union have insisted that there should be no fixed percentage or expectation for how much standardized tests should count — and that test results should serve almost entirely as just one measure to improve instruction. Deasy, in contrast, has insisted that test scores should play a significant role in a teacher's evaluation and that poor scores could contribute directly to dismissal.

In a Friday memo explaining the evaluation process, Deasy set 30% as the goal and the maximum for how much test scores and other data should count.

In an interview, he emphasized that the underlying thrust is to develop an evaluation that improves the teaching corps and that data is part of the effort.

"The public has been demanding a better evaluation system for at least a decade. And teachers have repeatedly said to me what they need is a balanced way forward to help them get better and help them be accountable," Deasy said. "We do this for students every day. Now it's time to do this for teachers."

Deasy also reiterated that test scores would not be a "primary or controlling" factor in an evaluation, in keeping with the language of an agreement reached in December between L.A. Unified and its teachers union. Classroom observations and other factors also are part of the evaluation process.

But United Teachers Los Angeles President Warren Fletcher expressed immediate concern about Deasy's move. During negotiations, he said, the superintendent had proposed allotting 30% to test scores but the union rejected the plan. Deasy then pulled the idea off the table, which allowed the two sides to come to an agreement, Fletcher said. Teachers approved the pact last month.

"To see this percentage now being floated again is unacceptable," the union said in a statement.

Fletcher described the pact as allowing flexibility for principals, in collaboration with teachers, first to set individual goals and then to look at various measures to determine student achievement and overall teacher performance.

"The superintendent doesn't get to sign binding agreements and then pretend they're not binding," Fletcher said.
I couldn't care less about these union hacks, but the district will only punish teachers for students who refuse to learn, who live in disfunctional families, and who are influenced by the norms of hip-hop gang-bang culture 100 times more than the long lost culture of scholarly commitment.

More at that top link.