Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The obligatory post about teacher data reports

What can I say?  I really have no words (not true, I have a few).  All I can say is: margin of error of 54 out of 100 points.  Unreliable, inaccurate, flawed, stupid, malicious... whatever.  Honestly, at this point, I just don't even care. Take me, fire me... do it.  If it ever comes to that I will know in my heart that I did everything I could do for the children of New York and I never took my job for granted.  If this is how I'm going to be evaluated, what can I do?  People say you have to fight it.  I'm tired of fighting.  I want to teach.

I'm a teacher.  I love teaching.  I love my school.  I love my class.  I work hard at my job.  I do whatever I can to encourage my students to love learning.  I love learning from them.  In 9 years of teaching, I'm having the best year yet (I wish I used this blog to elaborate on that).  It doesn't matter to the system.  I am disposable.  My school is disposable.  The children are commodities.

I have never been U rated.  Never had a letter in my file.  My data actually did not come out in the report since I don't teach a testing grade.  But it will eventually.  They have been tracking my students on ARIS for 4 years (or so... maybe longer) and I'm sure there will be a new "formula" to track lower grades teachers.  Maybe my first graders will be subjected to standardized testing so they can produce "data" on me.   It doesn't matter to the system.  

Go ahead, put 32 kids in my class.  Give me special ed students with IEPs that have been altered to NOT meet their needs and don't give them the services they are legally entitled to.   Don't give me any materials... nothing.... don't worry about it.  Don't worry about providing curriculum aligned to the common core standards, I will do it myself... no problem.  While your at it, take away my preps, my union, make me work longer hours and tether me to a blackberry well into the evening.  Don't consider any research in making your decisions and don't encourage me to either.  Don't provide me with any professional development.  Cut my school's budget so the kids won't have gym or music anymore... they never had art, so don't worry about that one at all.  Give my first graders a standardized test so you can track me.  Maybe your margin of error will work in my favor, maybe it wont.  It doesn't matter. You know what, just fire me (and you will break my heart).

This is the reality, folks.