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In Reform Battle, Teachers Oppose Testing, Support Standards

The results of a humongous survey of 40,000 school teachers, developed and funded jointly by USA Today, Scholastic, and the Bill...


The results of a humongous survey of 40,000 school teachers, developed and funded jointly by USA Today, Scholastic, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, are out today and put in perspective where on the reform battlefield the actual classroom educators stand.


According to a story in USA Today, only 7 percent of teachers believe that students' test scores are an accurate reflection of teacher performance. Rather, 55 percent support evaluating teachers on "student growth over course of an academic year." How that would be determined is not explicitly stated, though a Fresno, California-based teacher deciphers it as students "performing at levels which will prepare [students] for college and for the real world." (My question is, "performing on what?")

Interestingly, only 29 percent of the teachers surveyed think that merit pay will have a great effect on student performance and 10 percent see the granting of tenure as indicative of a good teacher. Also, a majority support the adoption of common standards for academics.

Here's a number that made me laugh: 31 percent said that "self-evaluation" is an accurate measure of performance. (And they wonder why everyone is gunning for them and their unions.)

Photo (cc) by Flickr user ronmad.










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