Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Measuring What Matters Part II

A new report will be released in California regarding the state of education. The report, prepared by 30 "experts" in the field, cites difficulties in sharing data, too many regulations and requirements for leaders, and ineffective methods for identifying effective teachers.

In a previous post I argued that we should be working to "measure what matters". In other words, if we want to know whether a teacher is effective we need to develop an example of "effective" and tools for determining whether the teacher is achieving that example. Teachers and leaders need to know where teachers on a scale (or rubric) and they need to know what to do next to improve. Years of service apparently can differentiate a 1st year teacher from a 5th year teacher, but after that there is little difference between a 5th year teacher and a 15th year teacher. Instead of seeing our longest serving teachers as the most skilled, we should create measures to see our most skilled teachers as our most skilled teachers.

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