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Last login: Thursday, November 4, 2010
Thank you so much for having Diane Ravitch on These Days. I hope lots of people heard her comments this morning. She is totally on target with her book & her advocacy for public education. Why is it that the public claims to love teachers as individuals but the minute they speak with a common voice collectively through their union, they are treated as if they are public enemy number one? We cannot hope to reform public education by making war on teachers. As many educators feared when the standardized testing craze began years ago with No Child Left Behind, we now see attempts to evaluate teachers based on their students' test scores, called the "value added" model. In August, the LA Times released so-called "teacher effectiveness" scores for 6,000 grades 3-5 teachers based on the statistical analysis of students' test score data conducted by only one researcher who worked as a consultant on loan from the RAND Corporation to the newspaper. They did this despite the consensus of opinion in the education research & tests & measurements expert community that the data should not be used "to name & shame" individual teachers. What kinds of teacher behaviors are we encouraging & rewarding when we make students' test scores the dominant measure of their work with our children? We are at a critical turning point in public education reform. Thank you, Dr. Ravitch, for your voice of sanity that we can only hope will reach the ears of sensible policymakers before it's too late.
November 4, 2010 at 10:40 p.m.
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