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Bravo Albany, you did your job! Sheesh...we should all hold news conferences at the end of the year and pat ourselves on the back for doing what we're being paid to do. That's what the Governor, Assembly Speaker and Senate Majority Leader did today. They wanted us to applaud them for working so hard this legislative session, even up until the very last day when they approved the teacher evaluation disclosure bill. Don't get me wrong, they were productive, but was all the pomp and circumstance really necessary? Congrats, fellas. You've earned yourselves a long summer vacation!
State lawmakers reached a deal today to approve Governor Cuomo's bill limiting the release of teacher evaluations to school parents, not the general public. The State Senate and Assembly overwhelmingly voted to pass the bill, which only would allow parents to see the grade of their child's teacher. Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos said it "struck a balance between a parent's right to know and some confidentiality."
Mayor Bloomberg had been lobbying for lawmakers to kill the bill. Bloomberg has said teachers evaluations should be available to the entire public. But State legislators agreed that limiting disclosure would avoid exploiting or embarrassing teachers. What do you say?
Would you have voted to limit the release of teacher evaluations to school parents? Why do you think Mayor Bloomberg and the Department of Education wanted teacher grades to released to the general public? What is the most effective way to rate the skills of a teacher?
Send your thoughts using the link above.
My, oh, my when will it all end.
So let's review: We have standardized tests that are full of errors. We have students who come to school without notebooks, pens, pencils if they show up. We have overcrowded classrooms, unqualified administrators, and a whole new crew of fresh faced Teaching Fellows who have never been in a classroom. We also have a statistical formula to predict where students "should" be at the end of the year. A statistical formula made up of theoretical "educated" guesses that is supposed to accurately predict where a student should score. If the student makes progress, but does not meet the statistical "target", the teacher is rated poorly. And we have a majority of parents who are blissfully unaware of most of these shenanigans in the DOE.
Add to that a mayor who has one focused goal: To abuse and demean teachers in any way possible while draining funds from the classrooms and passing the money to his cronies so they can privatize schools and make them profit centers. Oh, and he wants to publish these ratings, based on the aforementioned bogus formula, along with names, and faces if he could.
Seems to me that the major problems started when we began worrying more about rating teachers than rating students, or letting teachers rate students as opposed to some mammoth test company rating everyone. Maybe we should start rating parents and post their names, their children's names and thier addresses in the paper, too. Or if a student is not doing their work we can post the parents phone numbers and emails so evryone could call them or email them to start monitoring their children.
Just how do they evaluate the performance of the teachers? As you can see this Mayor has a mean streak in him by wanting to out everyone.
If this Bloomberg feels that teachers evaluations should be available to the entire public then he and he alone had access to all personnel records and so I would like to know why didn't he out all of these pedophiles all those years he has been in office.
Instead we have employees of all kinds sitting in their man named rubber rooms for years and years.
[HUSH HUSH MUSH MUSH]
How stupid do they think we are.
I HAVE HAD JUST ABOUT ENOUGH OF THIS CUOMO, BLOOMBERG, SILVER AND SKELOS.
THIS STATE IS RUN JUST LIKE A SHAM OPERATION.
[I CAN'T WAIT FOR TOMORROW NIGHTS PROJECT OF DISCUSSION.]
Thank you John,
The idea of using student test scores to evaluate teachers is essentially flawed so the more privacy concerning the results the better. Students have only themselves to blame if they do poorly on state exams.
James (educator-22 years)
Public school teachers are employees of the taxpaying citizens. The citizens have a right to know what their dollars are being spend on and whether or not it is the best deal for the dollar. All of the actions of the school teachers unions should also be monitored and revealed to the public.
Private schools have the right to restrict teacher information to parents of the school’s pupils and school administrators. They do not, or should not, work for the public.
Government schools should be shut down and replaced with private schools.
Port Richmond, SI
As a teacher, I am glad that Governor Cuomo and the State Legislatures were able to make a deal restricting the media from gaining access to teacher evaluations. In the last year papers like the post have done everything possible to exploit teachers only to hurt and divide. Mayor Bloomberg’s insistence on releasing misleading and inaccurate Teacher Data Reports last year is just an example of why the media should be restricted access to our evaluations.
Stuart from Bay Ridge
I'm tired of the constant attacks on the teaching profession. The people who are attacking don't want to go in the classrooms themselves and do a very difficult job, but they want to blame those that do for, at the very least, problems that should be shared by everyone.
Question for Michael Mulgrew: Which do you think would do more to improve our education system? Continue to vilify teachers and concentrate on the rare instances where hiring mistakes were made, or improve professional development and teacher support so that teachers will stay long enough to reach the prime years of teaching - which is about seven years?
Gregg on the Upper East Side
It’s a bad law to require the disclosure of unreliable teacher evaluations based on highly erratic test scores in ANY form. By posting the ratings by school and grade, with only teacher names suppressed, this will lead to an unhealthy and demoralizing guessing game, with parents following up by asking their principals. And how could anyone possibly justify exempting charter schools from this disclosure?
Is this another unfair preference shown the charter lobby by our privatizing Governor?
Class Size Matters
I'm ok with the new version of evaluation because it sounds fair. I think any one paid by tax dollar should be evaluated. They should allow appeal if the teachers don't think the evaluation is fair because some reason.
I would like them to work with teachers' union to get rip of bad teachers / principals faster and easier. Of cause pay the good teachers more money than what they're paying them now because they desired it.
I do think its fair, teachers evaluations should only be visible to parents with children in school OR parents who are potentially thinking of entering there children in a school and want to ensure that their kids are getting the best education. To make these records publics means ALL public employees from police officers, doctors to meter maids should have transparency of their work records. Aren't our taxes paying their salaries as well?
Erik From Bushwick
I truly believe that the evaluations are good and that parents have to know. i would love to have a survey handed to students so that they can rate their teachers. one would be in the middle of the yearand the other at the end of the year. Some students may lie, but most of the time they say the truth. Make students count. there are many excellent teachers but others bully their students during the whole year and no one does anything about it, if you complain to superiors in the school, you are the one that gets in trouble not the bipolar or psycho teacher. thanks.
Teachers work hard. Parents know their teachers. As test scores don't tell us everything about their children, evaluations by a supervisor (who may or may not like the teacher) is just a quick snapshot of what is really happening in a classroom. You want to know about a teacher, ask other parents. Thank you Governor for not supporting Mayor Bloomberg.
Mark Twain once said "There are lies, there are damn lies, and there are statistics" . He obviously knew of the mayor's statistics.
Why don't they open up the assistant principal and principal evaluations? Shouldn't the parents know that as well?
I feel that the mayor should only reveal teacher evaluations to the parents of the students only..
They need to re evaluate testing across the board for all grades as well.
Anthony from Glendale
The problem with the NYC public school system is the bureaucracy at the Department of Education!!!
I was hired as a Special Ed teacher for a Special Needs High School in Harlem. I really connected with those kids on a very deep level as I come from a home of people with Special Needs. I saw so many teachers and Para-Professionals in that school who could care less about those students!
I completed my training with the NYC Teaching Fellows, the principal hired me and when I went down to the DOE to pick up my ID, I was told that due to a "technicality" with my application I could not be employed as a teacher.
As a result of the bureaucracy at the DOE, those kids lost out on a truly good, caring teacher.
While I do believe that Teacher Evaluations should be made available to the parents of the children in the NYC public schools, I do not believe that their evaluations should have ever been made public. This was an invasion of their privacy and served no purpose. Should the DOE Officials, all attorneys and support staff working at the Department of Education evaluations be made public . . . if they even get evaluated? If you are going to disclose evaluations of DOE teachers then the same should be applicable to the other employees at the DOE -- they are also public employees and affect the children of NYC as well.
I praise Governor Cuomo for this bill and believe that he and the Legislature struck a fair balance on teacher evaluations and I am glad that Mayor Bloomberg lost this battle. I can still believe in hope.
Upper east side
The first thought I had when I heard the proposal to let everyone see teacher evaluations was this. Suppose the kids get a hold of these results. Imagine how this would affect them. They'd have no confidence or respect for a teacher who has a lower score. There are so many things that could go wrong if this were to happen. Bloomberg go home to Boston or wherever.
So what makes a bad teacher. Could someone define this. And why not release everyones evaluations. Those who work system the motor vehicle, the marriage license clerks etc
When is this jackass mayor going to address real city problems
Trying to determine the effectiveness and quality of a teacher by the score his or her students get on a standardized test is like trying to rate the ability and skills of a dentist by the number of cavities his patients have......education is a shared responsibility.
Why are people (teachers) so afraid of their performance being made public? It seems absolutely ridiculous--a non-issue. Everett from Harlem sounded supercilious. His comment that educators are highly educated with masters degrees which means the general public can't understand what a teacher does (the art) is asinine!
I am an educator and would like to express my opinion about teacher evaluations and their availability to the public.
NYS has focused upon degrees as opposed to the hard work that teachers commit to on a daily basis. Some educators with degrees are molesting and hurting children while others are fired for not being certified. Evaluations are great for the individual to assess their weaknesses, but these too are biased based on the person who is evaluating and
why they are evaluating. For instance, a colleague of mine is an excellent educator who cares for the parents and childrenand will not move with the lesson until her class grasps the concepts taught to the children. However, she received a less than satisfactory evaluation after defending herself from an abusive teacher in one of the Bronx Charter Schools.
Parents should have a say in the performance of an educator, but once again this may be biased as well. I believe that an evaluation should be more personal than general and should not determine the real value of a teacher's worth. I have seen many educators fired for all the wrong reasons and one reason in particular is nepotism.
If you are a good teacher who really cares about your students, and works hard to inspire and challenge your students to achieve, then you should have nothing to worry about. If you just look at teaching as a job and you only tolerate the kids you are teaching, then you should be concerned.
I was raised in a family of teachers. I know what a good teacher should be. My aunt's former students still came to visit her until she passed away at age 90 because she changed their lives. I wonder how many of today's teachers can say that?
I wish they would publish evaluations on the principals and other staff as many of them are part of the problem.
Evaluations are essential to any job to ensure workers are performing at their best levels. There are way too many tenured teachers in the NYC schools that should not be running a classroom and are hiding behind tenure and seniority and while no evaluation is perfect, it is important to regularly assess anyone who is involved in educating our children (including principles and other administrators). These scores should be made available to necessary parties, like parents and any other people who are charged with making education decisions for children.
Kate in Greenpoint
The whole notion of teacher evaluations based on standardized test scores is a house of cards invented by the corporations who bleed money for their own benefits. In the end it will collapse and the carnage will be incredible!
Kenn from Bayside
As a student who has just completed her bachelor's degree and has completed student teaching, I must say that I feel a glimmer of hope with this new bill. I must thank the math teacher and Gloria for their opinions. My mentor looked close to tears as she explained she was also sad for us new, aspiring souls to become the next generation of educators in this city. And I, myself, am quite scared to enter this profession with this war of what a good teacher looks like still happening. Terrified, actually, to the point of tears. I hope this war ends soon. Teaching is an art that changes colors from day to day. Scores do not reflect a student's true intelligence. A child who is starving from an unhealthy home will not do as well, a child who is abused at home and acts out in the class because he/she is looking for attention--there are many factors that goes into it. If the teachers who have spent many years on the job got better benefits and more thanks, I'm sure they would leave their positions for the new incomers. And new teachers do need to learn from old teachers--educators of new and old should be able to learn together and not be too busy worried to tears about mayors who feel they're experts for education.
I wish Bloomberg would enroll to be a student teacher before he opens his mouth. And scoring someone on one day that five people walk into a classroom to score the teacher? On one day? Let them sit there the entire year before they're scored. And instead of a grade? Let it be feedback to improve.
Like any job if your doing your job then you don't have to worry about being evaluated or going public.
As always those who aren't doing what they are supposed to do will be the first to go against this.
There are many teachers out there who should not be teachers and they are a hindrance to students.
Evaluations would help weed out the bad apples and expose them.
Having you grade publicized could actually help your career like the caller earlier.
I think it's a good bill simply because some information should not be privy to the public regarding protocols within the public school system. If you look at how public colleges evaluate their Instructors, maybe the public school system should develop the same policy. Instructors are evaluated by the students at the end of the semester. These evaluations are then tabulated for perusal by both the Instructor and department head of the respective course. This is useful to both the Instructor, student, future student and department in that you can see an Instructor's performance. It also implies that something can be done to correct a problem or vice versa. Anyone wanting to see these results must be a student or instructor from that institution; for public schools, parents could be given access by using a user name and password to see each of the child's instructor's performance; as well as that of their child; Using this method in the lower grades may not be feasible but given the creative and innovative ideas coming out of many think tanks today, something could be devised to accommodate such an idea.
Given the ability to exploit any kind of information today for nefarious reasons in our continuing technological environment, it would only be prudent to limit disclosure regarding teacher data and information. What the Bloomberg administration is not taking into consideration is the leaking of information that could be detrimental to not only the teacher but the DOE and City of New York as well. Bad teachers should be excised from the system; those that need improvement should be identified through some system of observation other than what is currently in place since it is extremely motivated by politics (district, school, administration, City of New York)
There's nothing wrong with a teacher being evaluated and being held to high standards. However, what's happening within the NYC DOE is this. Evaluation systems are rolled out without meaningful preparation. Administrators are being hired as managers, not educational leaders, with little or no educational experience; their roll is to evaluate teachers based on unproven models that they, themselves, could never carry out in the classroom, effectively. It's a mess.
Teachers progress will always be available through word of mouth. The mayor should focus on creating schools in Districts 27 28 29 and having an efficient middle school enrollment system. Not One new school was created in these areas. I went to fill out application appeal for Middle school enrollment, I chose 3 schools and my top choice for my son (Eagles Academy) 2 out of three choices that i was given are schools that have a Progress reports grade of D or F. My issue is that I was never really given a choice for my son to go to a school that meets his Academic needs. No one sends their child to school with the intent to fail yet the mayor, does nothing about the fact that most of the Middle schools in these districta are failing as a whole.
Like everything with this administration there is a hidden agenda. Possibly to get the seasoned teachers out and have less expensive, less experienced, younger and more moldable to conformity teachers in their place!!! Maybe the focus is trying to be taken off of the poor results of the ridiculous "standardized tests" which take away months of teaching and learning time!! Could that be why children aren't learning!!?? From February through June, teachers spend most school time centered around "standardized testing, their own assessment of each skill, and 2 report card periods, to mention a few of the non-educating time consuming tasks stealing our teachers from our children. Is there any other profession where evaluations are public information?