Saturday, March 17, 2012

Survey finds teachers don't trust annual state skills tests

This from USA Today by way of C-J:
From Dan Wasserman
Despite years of rhetoric from lawmakers and education reformers about the importance of tying teacher pay to student test scores, fewer teachers now believe the move will keep good teachers in the classroom.
A new online survey of 10,000 U.S. teachers, released Thursday, finds that only 16% believe linking student performance and teacher pay is "absolutely essential" or "very important" in retaining good teachers. That's down from 28% in 2010.

In all, only 52% of teachers say it'll make any difference at all, down from 65% two years ago, the first year the survey was done.

The massive national teacher survey by the educational publisher Scholastic was funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The push to link teacher retention and salaries to scores on annual state skills tests has become commonplace in U.S. education, promoted most significantly by the Obama administration's Race to the Top grants, which all but require school districts to do so.

The survey finds that teachers simply don't trust the tests. Only 26% say they're "an accurate reflection of student achievement."

Most teachers also say that simply doing away with evaluations won't work, either: 92% say tenure, granted to many teachers after only a handful of years in the classroom, "should not protect ineffective teachers."

The findings show that teachers welcome evaluations, said Margery Mayer, Scholastic's education president. "They just didn't want it all based on one test."...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If you consulted with thirteen different doctors (you know the folks that have been educated in the field, hold state licenses and have many years of experience) and 10 of them told you they didn't trust a diagnostic procedure to determine if you were healthy, would you bother with that test, much less trust it?

Good teachers don't mind being evaluated because they are effective and usually striving to be better. The exams were intended to measure student knowledge, not teacher effectiveness. We are running good people out of the classroom and pre-service teaching programs with this sort of educational McCarthyism.