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Michele Kerr on teacher testing



Michele Kerr, who was almost mau-maued out of Stanford's graduate program in teaching because her blog disagreed with "progressive" views held by Stanford administrators, has an excellent op-ed in today's Washington Post about the need for good metrics in teacher performance assessment:

Teachers can't be evaluated on students who miss 10 percent of the class or don't have the prerequisite knowledge for success. Yet accepting these reasonable conditions might reveal that common rhetorical goals for education (everyone goes to college, algebra for eighth-graders) are, to put it bluntly, impossible. So we'll either continue the status quo at a stalemate or the states will make the tests so easy that the standards are meaningless.

Yes, some students are doing poorly because their teachers are terrible. Other students are doing poorly because they simply don't care, their parents don't care, their cognitive abilities aren't up to the task or some vicious combination of factors we haven't figured out -- with no regard to teacher quality. No one is eager to discover the size of that second group, so serious testing with teeth will go nowhere.

 

 


Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy
rmangual@manhattan-institute.org

Katherine Lazarski
Manhattan Institute
klazarski@manhattan-institute.org

 

Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.