Last week I posted about some bills coming up to "improve" Educaiton around here. I thought I'd share with you their repsonse to my queries and concerns about tying teacher salaries and jobs to their performance, and how one assesses performance (in particular my concerns that it would just mean more standardized tests which don't actually test teacher performance.)
"Thank you for your passionate response, we are actually in agreement with you and happy to report that the Performance Evaluation measures will be based on Student Academic Growth overall (with test scores as one of many measures). Our bill is based on the work that began last year with the Performance Evaluation Reform Act of 2010. PERA will create a statewide model for evaluations based on student academic growth. School Districts will be required to add this model to their evaluation plans, unless they already have one in place that calculates growth over multiple measures (this could include teacher/classroom observation, student performance on internal classroom weekly tests – those given by teachers, performance on homework over the course of the year, tracking attendance rates, and even classroom behavior as a measure for student growth over a school year) School districts and teachers unions will be required to work together to determine what “student academic growth” measures should be put in place in addition to the ISAT. The law only requires that 50% of a teachers eval be based on student academic growth, unless a district and a union cannot come to an agreement, then it would be only 35% and the state model (which will likely be Charlotte Danielson) will become the default evaluation plan.
The Performance Evaluation Advisory Council meets monthly to discuss the changes, ..., these meetings are open to the public so we encourage people to attend and give input to the model as it’s being developed. http://www.isbe.net/PEAC/meetings/meetings.htm
Most of our bill will not go into effect until PERA is implemented (2013 for 300 Chicago schools). We appreciate your support and would love for you to contact your local State Rep to share with them how you feel about SB 7, we also have volunteer opportunities available if you are interested in getting involved!
Stand for Children
It's not perfect, but I feel better knowing that the plan is something OTHER than just more standardized tests.