“Follow the money- change teacher pensions to 401k so Wall Street gets more profits. Textbook companies make $$ from test prep. Corporations back charters and make money from our tax $$. The losers=students.”
“For those in NYS, this is no big loss. We sold our souls(teacher rating systems/data) to get the RTTT grant $$. My district received an award of $70K spread over 3 years. This $$ will not even cover the cost of the data programs/testing/etc. What a joke. Tell Arne he can keep his money.”
“In NYS grades 3-8 the tests are meaningless- those are the only tests required by NCLB. The score begin to tip when kids reach 5-6th grade and they realize the tests don't count. We have HS regents exams that students must pass to graduate. Not surprisingly the percentage of high scores goes up when students reach HS. The scores”
“For a couple yrs. my school offered exemptions to students who scored well by not having to take their local final exam in ELA. Their scores went way up, then NYS moved the tests later and we could not exempt...scores went down. Proof that tests are not valid b/c students are have varying attitudes towards tests.”
“All the supposed studies posted today on Huffpost by economic professors assume that standardized tests are valid measurements. They are not. Most students know that these tests have no effect on their grades so they give varying efforts on tests.”
insidious on Jan 6, 2012 at 22:44:50
“In Arizona, the tests are tied to graduation. If the student fails...no diploma/walking with their Class.”
“This movie is a promo for "Corporate Education" reform in which the parent trigger actually takes any power of the public away from schools with an appointed board to control schools. Parent Trigger=Parent Tricker.”
“While I too see charters being used to destroy and privatize education, I give the author credit for staying in touch with the classroom. Too many ed "deformers" and politicians have never taught. Many school administrators have limited experience in the classroom. The author should be commended.”
tultican on Jul 8, 2012 at 00:29:55
“I give Shaun Johnson a lot of credit as well. I have his posts on alert because I want to see what he has to say. He mentioned in a reply that in the public schools there was no summer school program possible and so his only choice was the charter school. At my school, we had a really effective summer program that was making it possible for students to accelerate their programs. As a result we had close to 40 students take the Calculus AP B exam 3 years ago. Since then the money for that program has disappeared and this year we had no students take that exam. One of the reasons that money went away is the loss of students to charter schools.”
hp blogger Shaun Johnson on Jul 7, 2012 at 13:32:25
“Thank you. Classroom teaching makes me a better teacher educator. And, my previous public school teaching notwithstanding, I probably collected more experience in three summer programs than the vast, vast majority of "deformers."”
Actually I write those comments more as a parent of 2 elementary kids than as a teacher. I have seen the destructive nature of testing as a teacher and when I hear my kids' teachers say "when we have time" we try to squeeze in Sci and Soc Studies that bothers me big time.”
“My child is not a data point.
High stakes testing kills brain cells.
Teachers with rights have strong classrooms.
Corporations profit from Michelle Rhee's reforms.
Ineffective teachers can teach to test.
Harvard study has been debunked already.
Value added model does not work.
Each student is not a number.
Opt out your child this year.
Fire Arne Duncan right this minute.
Put real teachers in charge of education.
Standardized testing ruins critical thinking skills.
Do history, science, arts still exist.
Students first really equals corporations first.
Strong teacher unions equal strong schools.”
luapmi2 on Feb 14, 2012 at 04:25:14
It's about the children...we can see your priorities.”
“I can only give you the "boots on the ground" view from a real teacher in the classroom. Would I share a great idea if my pay or my job status is based on my students' test scores. My colleagues do a great job of working as a team, but this would cease if numbers are used to judge each of us in a competition. In NYS, the governor wants to base school aid on test scores, so why would my school share good ideas with another school.
This business model of education will not work. Would GM share a great innovation with Ford?”
“I agree that sharing of best practices is the hallmark of the great school. But, for example is NYS, where the ignorant Governor and State Ed commissioner are pushing rating systems and merit pay would a teacher want to share with their colleagues anymore? If an educators job status or pay is based on test scores, would that teacher want to help a colleague to succeed. This is why all of these "reforms" are bad ideas, ultimately they hurt students instead of helping them.”
spencerljlloyd on Feb 10, 2012 at 08:37:51
“I respectfully disagree with you. Although I do understand the premise of your comment, collaboration is only going to lead to BETTER teaching, BEST teaching practices being used in more classrooms, and higher student performance. Along with individual pay, and job status being based on test scores, there are widely accepted full school incentives in place, which will benefit the entire faculty at a school. To that point, if there is sharing going on across different districts, then what do EITHER of those teachers have to worry? They really are not competing with each other. Furthermore, competition has been the missing piece in education for far too long. In India, where 1/3 of the schools are operated by for profit companies, things are working out pretty well for those students. Lastly, most of the reforms, which are catching on across the nation are really motivated by a push to elevate the teaching profession. It is time for educators to be paid for the work we are doing, and to be seen by key stake-holders across the nation, as South Korea calls us, Nation Builders.”
“At least this 16yr old somehow is able to critically think despite 10 yrs of NCLB trying to hold him back. He is more enlightened on education policy that Obama, Duncan, Rhee and Cuomo. Fire NYS Educ. Commissioner King and replace him with this young man.”
“"unspoken doctrine that equates destiny with zip code." - charters and vouchers will only cause this problem to make public schools worse. So the parents who care and have the ability, knowledge and awareness of these opportunities will enroll their children. The kids who are left in public schools will have parents who do not care. Want to solve school issues in these areas= work to eliminate poverty: good jobs, raise minimum wage, subsidized day care, etc.
NYS teachers are fighting the use of standardized tests to judge teachers because it will destroy schools and STUDENTS by placing an emphasis on test scores only. Have corporate charter schools, which are basically test-prep factories helped?
Tenure- protects educators from being fired because they stand up to administration when the powers try to push poorly planned policies that hurt students. I stood up to stop and new special ed program that would hurt special and regular ed kids. The new policy failed after two months and we went to a teacher committee idea and not the administrators. No tenure--would I have called out my administrator- NO.
Yet another writer who has no clue how schools work on a day to day basis.”
“This is happening in NY with Democrat. Gov. Cuomo is forcing teachers to take on a system of evaluation that is using test scores. He is being helped by the new State Ed commissioner who is a former head of a test-prep charter school.”
“Actually everyone should be aware that schools are being micro-managed whether it be by NCLB,RTTP, or administrators. My kids school has a bunch a early release days. I wonder how many are a waste of time for teachers when kids could be learning. My school's meetings are a joke..looking at invalid data that will not help my students.”
Dorothy Moody on Jan 16, 2012 at 02:11:49
“The only time those early release days are valuable is when teachers get appropriate professional development. My school spent time teaching us ways to integrate our laptops into the curriculum and I learned more than I ever thought I would. At another district, however, I had a weekly repeat of my credentialing classes and it was such a waste of time.”
“1. Impossible to increase student motivation w/o making the test a promotion step to the next grade level, that may not be fair to all kids.
2. I know my own children are progressing and their teachers are doing a great job by checking their hw and listening to them grow in their reading abilities. I don't need a test.to tell me that my children's school & teachers are doing a fine job.”
skittle on Dec 29, 2011 at 21:57:08
“That may work for you, but subjective evaluations are hardly the only measure one should use. Objective testing certainly can be a benefit, especially if you want to compare performances across districts and even states in an attempt to recognize best practices.”
“I would like to see some politicians and state ed types come to my school and proctor the ELA test to the classes of kids who have severe learning and emotional issues. The testing days are "cruel and unusual punishment" for these students.”
“The problem is the validity of the data. In NYS the tests do not count for anything as far as the students are concerned, so once kids reach 5th grade they start to realize that they don't need to put forth their best efforts...so how can we use these tests to make any sort of valid data.”
skittle on Dec 29, 2011 at 21:06:57
“If motivation or student prioritization is the problem, then perhaps parents and teachers could do a better job. Increasing test importance will only meet further resistance from the teacher and administrators. So do you just give up measuring student progress and/or school effectiveness and hope for the best...doesn't seem like an attractive alternative. Let's face it, few like to be evaluated when the result may not be positive.”