"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Monday, January 09, 2006

Tightening the Noose on Teachers

As pressure mounts under NCLB's impossible mandates, teaching to the test is fast becoming the mantra of know-nothing and dangerous politicians like Republican State Senator Teresa S. Lubbers, of Indianapolis who equates raising test scores with learning. She has introduced a bill in the Indiana legislature that ties ISTEP to teacher ratings.

How many more states are going to hold a gun to teachers' heads and use standardized tests as a weapon in this war on public school education?
Four states have passed laws that tie teacher evaluations to some form of student achievement. Going one step further, dozens of cities and school districts have ditched traditional teacher pay scales, which reward teachers largely on seniority and level of education. Instead, they've tried merit-pay systems, in which teachers get bigger raises if students perform well. Denver voters approved a teacher merit-pay plan two months ago.

"It's fairly ironic that the thing that matters most in schools, student learning, is forbidden in statute" from holding teachers accountable, said Sen. Teresa S. Lubbers, R-Indianapolis, who wrote the bill. "If you think about it, the direct line of instruction is actually the teacher, not the principal."

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1 comment:

  1. It's good to find you guys. Excellent blog.

    My wife is a long-time Indianapolis Public Schools teacher. IPS is a textbook study in racism and public education. The high schools were segregated in the 20s, when the Klan ran the state. The city annexed everything to the county line in the 60s, but left the township school system intact. A federal desegregation ruling in the early 70s forced the old city school system to absorb the transportaion costs to send minority students to the townships. Beginning in the 80s, white flight simply moved outside the city/county limits, where schools spend more per capita on their football stadiums than IPS spends on education. Still the war on inner-city schools continues, and Lubbers, the leading charter schools/voucher advocate, is right in the middle of it.