Posts from December 10th, 2012
December 10, 2012
- The head of the country’s 17th largest district wants a three-year moratorium on testing. (Answer Sheet)
- There may never have been a brontosaurus. Science teachers, adjust your lessons accordingly. (NPR)
- “One test-based incentive we can all get behind”: Security procedures before and after tests. (Shanker)
- Toys and the stores that sell them are an integral part of the class divide in children’s learning. (Times)
- A teacher looks at recent history and sees an opening for a minority party in the UFT. (Accountable Talk)
- A new-to-the-country high school senior has a different take on applying to college. (SchoolBook)
- A Russian kindergarten aims to be attractive to children because of its location in an airplane. (Russo)
December 10, 2012
About one in five city teachers will get a sneak peek on Tuesday about how they might be rated under a new evaluation system.
That’s when the city Department of Education will be sharing the state’s “growth scores” with teachers for whom a score was generated. The scores reflect how well a teacher’s students performed on state math and reading exams last year compared to other students like them and, according to state law, must eventually constitute 25 percent of annual evaluations for teachers who work in tested grades and subjects.
In New York City, about 17 percent of teachers teach fourth or fifth grade or English or math in middle school. They will get their growth score for the 2011-2012 school year Tuesday evening in their Department of Education email, department officials said.
The department has had the information since the end of the summer, state education officials said at a briefing for reporters last month. Principals got the reports last week and are expected to use the scores to help teachers at their school improve, according to Connie Pankratz, a department spokeswoman. But teachers are supposed to get access only to their own scores. (more…)
December 10, 2012
Student opinion surveys seem unlikely to play a role in the city’s teacher evaluation system, even as research suggests that they can provide valuable information.
The city Department of Education piloted student surveys as part of its preparation for new teacher evaluations, and the head of the state’s teachers union says student feedback could be useful in helping to rate teachers. But city union officials say they are staunchly opposed to incorporating student feedback in teacher evaluations because the information could be skewed and could encourage teachers to put student approval ahead of student learning.
But what do students think about what they can contribute to teacher evaluations? The students GothamSchools surveyed last week at a reception for award-winning math and science teachers had mixed opinions about whether their peers could accurately judge the quality of their teachers.
Should student survey results factor into teacher evaluations?
“I think some students would be negative because they have anger against a certain teacher, so when it comes time, they might put bad stuff. But at the same time, as students, we are able to look at what teachers are able to bring to the table in terms of skills and personalities.” —Raymond John, senior at Gotham Professional Arts Academy (more…)
December 10, 2012
- Promise Academy Charter School paid severance to 15 teachers and 18 staffers fired last year. (Post)
- Tough discipline fuels attrition at some charter schools, but others hold on to students. (SchoolBook)
- Four additional city schools adopted the School of One personalized math program this year. (WSJ)
- Some child-care centers that could have been closed will stay open another year due to Sandy. (NY1)
- A Campaign for Fiscal Equity survey of 33 N.Y. schools found that many lack basic resources. (Times)
- Mayor Bloomberg said schools would face steep cuts without a teacher evaluation deal. (Daily News)
- Bloomberg also said losing state school aid over evaluations could cost other city agencies. (Post)
- The Post says the city’s and state’s upcoming evaluation deadlines are meaningless because of the UFT.
- The federal government is giving the city $30 million for free school lunches after Sandy. (Post)
- After parents pushed the city to test for post-Sandy mold at P.S./M.S. 114, the city found some. (Post)
- The members of a Bronx high school’s national title-winning chess team beat the odds. (Daily News)
- Donna Lieberman of the NYCLU: Police officers should not be handling city schools’ discipline. (Times)
- The Daily News praises two Brooklyn districts’ decision to engineer an economically diverse school.
- A Texas district will be told if it can make students take part in electronic attendance tracking. (WSJ)
- Los Angeles’s recent teacher evaluation deal means that “value-added” data won’t count. (L.A. Times)
Last week on GothamSchools:
- Supporters of the UFT Charter School argued that their school should be allowed to stay open. (Friday)
- Banana Kelly High School lost its principal after a tumultuous tenure of just over one year. (Friday)
- The UFT chief told all Democratic mayoral hopefuls they can use his name in fundraising. (Thursday)
- The city is proposing making it a little bit easier for high school students to get a transfer. (Thursday)
- How observations will be structured and what they will look for are still under discussion. (Thursday)
- The principal of Boys and Girls High School laid into the city at a pre-closure hearing. (Wednesday)
- Chancellor Walcott warned that schools would suffer without a teacher evaluation deal. (Wednesday)
- Supporters of Lehman High School defended their school, which they have practice doing. (Tuesday)
- The prime minister of South Korea visited Democracy Prep Charter High School in Harlem. (Monday)