Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

August 19, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll Just Released – Not Good News For President Obama

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Every year for the past 45 years, Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup have done a Poll On Education issues. This year’s poll results were just released.

You can read a summary and the entire poll results here.

I’m going to just reprint parts of their press release because it gives a good overview of the results.First, though, here are links to my posts about the poll in previous years:

This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll Just Released — Here Are Highlights (& “Reformers” Are Not Going To Be Happy)

The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll — 2012

The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll (2011).

Here’s are excerpts from their press release:

The American public has sharpened its belief that the federal government should not play a dominant role in public education, with a majority saying they simply do not support initiatives that they believe were created or promoted by federal policymakers, a new survey shows.

Moreover, only 27 percent of respondents give President Barack Obama a grade of “A” or “B” for his performance in support of public schools – down from 41 percent in 2011. A majority of those surveyed, 54 percent, do not think standardized tests are helpful to teachers; many do not understand how charter schools work, and the number of Americans saying they are familiar with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) has skyrocketed in just one year, with a majority
saying they oppose the standards….

…The new survey suggests the American public has a lot more confidence in local school systems than in the federal government. Fifty percent gave their local schools a grade of “A” or “B” and 56 percent said their local school board should have the greatest influence in deciding what was taught. Only 15 percent thought the federal government should have the most influence.

Yet when the focus was shifted from the respondents’ own local schools to ask about the performance of the nation’s schools in general, only 17 percent extended a grade of “B” or better to America’s schools….

….When asked a series of questions about standardized testing, the public generally supported various specialized tests such as those used for college entrance and Advanced Placement courses. But 54 percent of those questioned said they simply do not believe standardized testing in the classroom really helps local school teachers decide what to teach. Public school parents are even more negative about the value of standardized testing with 68 percent believing they are not helpful to teachers.

August 21, 2013
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll Just Released — Here Are Highlights (& “Reformers” Are Not Going To Be Happy)

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Every year for the past 45 years, Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup have done a Poll On Education issues. This year’s poll results were just released.

You can read a summary and the entire poll results here.

I’ll share a few pieces of information that stand-out to me but, first, here are links to my posts about the poll in previous years:

The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll — 2012

The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll (2011).

The Educated Reporter has already published their analysis of the data.

Here are quotes that I consider to be the highlights from the poll results:

Fewer than 25% of Americans believe increased testing has helped the performance of local public schools.

In just one year, Americans reversed their opinion, and now 58% oppose requiring that teacher evaluations include student scores on standardized tests.

Almost two of three Americans oppose releasing information to newspapers about how students of individual teachers perform on standardized tests.

Almost two of three Americans have never heard of the Common Core State Standards, arguably one of the most important education initiatives in decades, and most of those who say they know about the Common Core neither understand it nor embrace it….Among the third who had heard of the Common Core, only four of 10 said the standards can help make education in the United States more competitive globally; a majority said the standards will make the U.S. less competitive or have no effect.

Americans said their children are safe at school,and they reject the idea of arming teachers and principals.

A majority of Americans give the public schools in their community an A or B — the highest rating ever recorded by this poll — but fewer than one of five would give the schools nationally a B or better.

Americans value having schools teach 21st-century skills such as critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity.

More than 70% of Americans have trust and confidence in the men and women who teach in public schools, and 65% have trust in public school principals. These percentages are even higher for Americans under the age of 40.

Lack of financial support continues to be the biggest problem facing public schools. Public school parents agree, and they see overcrowding as the second biggest problem. Three new concerns rose to near the top of the list of the biggest problems facing public schools: lack of parental support, difficulties in getting good teachers, and testing requirements and regulations.

About the only good news for “school reformers” is this: Americans’ support for public charter schools remains high at slightly less than 70%, and two of three Americans support new public charter schools in their communities.

However, even that news is somewhat tempered with this: Seventy percent of Americans oppose private school vouchers — the highest level of opposition to vouchers ever recorded in this survey.

The question is: What will “school reformers” do in response? Will they moderate their positions and come to the table to compromise, or will they double-down in self-righteousness and zeal (and get a lot more money from Gates, Walton, Broad, etc.)?

August 24, 2012
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll — 2012

Every year for the past 44 years, Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup have done a Poll On Education issues. This year’s poll results were just released. I’ve been out of town for the past couple of days, and haven’t had a chance to review it in-depth. I thought, though, that it would be useful to share with readers some of the commentaries on the poll that will be on on my reading list this weekend.

You might also be interested in The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll (2011).

Here are my choices for The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll — 2012:

Poll: Americans’ views on public education is by Valerie Strauss at The Washington Post.

What the PDK/Gallup Poll Says About U.S. Education (And How It Compares to Finland) is by Barnett Berry.

Changes in the Public’s Attitudes Toward the Public Schools is at The Learning First blog.

Analyzing the new PDK/Gallup poll on how Americans view public education is by Diane Ravitch.

The Seven Most Surprising Findings of the 2012 PDK/Gallup Poll on Public Schools is from Ed Week.

Poll: Attitudes soften over children of illegal immigrants is from USA Today.

Additional suggestions are welcome.

If you’ve found this list helpful, you might want to consider subscribing to this blog for free.

You might want to also view the over nine hundred other “The Best…” lists.

August 17, 2011
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll

Earlier this morning, the results of the latest Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Poll On Education issues were released. I thought I’d pull together some good analyses and reports on it, and will continue to add to this list.

Here are my choices for The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Poll On Education:

Poll: Americans Trust Teachers, Split on Teachers’ Unions is from Education Week.

New poll: Public trusts teachers, likes technology and school choice is from Hechinger Ed.

Here is the poll itself.

I wrote a brief post late last night that shares my various posts on the polls from previous years.

Poll: Parents give thumbs up to local schools is from USA Today.

Stephen Krashen writes about the fact that “parents rate their local schools much more positively than they do schools in the US in general” and points to a Gerald Bracey article that elaborates on why.

Americans Dislike Teachers’ Unions, But Dislike State Governors More is from The Atlantic.

The Public Has Spoken! is from Learning First.

What Americans Think About Teachers Versus What They’re Hearing is from The Shanker Blog.

Additional suggestions are welcome.

If you’ve found this list helpful, you might want to consider subscribing to this blog for free.

You might want to also view the over seven hundred other “The Best…” lists.

August 30, 2013
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

August’s Best Posts From This Blog

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I regularly highlight my picks for the most useful posts for each month — not including “The Best…” lists. I also use some of them in a more extensive monthly newsletter I send-out. You can see older Best Posts of the Month at Websites Of The Month (more recent lists can be found here).

Here are some of the posts I personally think are the best, and most helpful, ones I’ve written during this past month (not in any order of preference):

Social Emotional Learning Can Help, But More Research Shows It’s Not Enough

“Building a Community of Self-Motivated Learners” Is Title Of My Next Book

All My Education Week Teachers Posts From Past Two Years In One Place

Bill Gates’ Employee Evaluation Process

This Is The Best Video I’ve Seen On Perseverance & Resilience: “There’s no dishonor in having a disability”

Discussion Questions & Resources For Combined #engchat & #sschat On Monday

USA Weekend Feature Article: “What teachers want you to know”

This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll Just Released — Here Are Highlights (& “Reformers” Are Not Going To Be Happy)Guest Post: Commentary On New IB Theory Of Knowledge Guide From Author Of Bestselling TOK Textbook

I’m Now Writing A Weekly Post For The NY Times On Teaching ELLs

Great Illustration On The Shelf-Life Of Knowledge

Wow, Google Street View “Treks” Site Is Impressive!

If You Don’t Have Teacher Access To YouTube At Your School, Then This Search Engine is a “Must”

Lingua.ly Is A Useful Tool For Second-Language Learners

“Rewordify” Is One Of The Most Unique Sites Out There For English Language Learners & Others

This May Be The Best Geography Site Of The Year: “40 maps that explain the world”

Attention IB Theory Of Knowledge Teachers: How Is The New TOK Guide Going To Affect How You Teach?

“Mighty Meeting” Lets You Easily Create Free Online Meetings For An Unlimited Number Of Participants

“BrainRush” Lets You Create Online Learning Activities & Monitor Student Progress

Updated “Best and Worst Education News of 2013 — So Far”

“A Good Beginning is More Than Half of the Whole”

“Why we can’t all get along over school reform”

Quote Of The Day: “A Question That Can Change Your Life”

Do We Want A “Community Of Learners” Or A “Classroom Of Students”?

“Ways To Start Off The New Year On A Positive Note – Part One”

Create Your Own “Escape The Room” Game With “Room Escape Maker”

Two Great Sites – SAS Curriculum Pathways & Awesome Stories – Upgrading Big Time This Month

Excellent Article On Teaching Making Home Visits — & It Features Our School!

Deliberate Practice, Myelin & The Brain

Video: Cookie Monster Sings — I Kid You Not — About Self Regulation

Ask A Classroom Question, Any Classroom Question….

A Site For Teaching ELLs About Adjectives & TOK Students About Perception

Chaplin & Keaton Silent Movies For English Language Learners

Now This Is The Classroom Management Mindset I Need To Have….

Yet Another Good Piece For Students On Learning & The Brain

 

August 22, 2013
by Larry Ferlazzo
2 Comments

Delusional School “Reformers” In California

Yesterday, at the end of my post on the new Gallup Poll showing public opposition to the school “reformer” agenda growing dramatically, I asked:

The question is: What will “school reformers” do in response? Will they moderate their positions and come to the table to compromise, or will they double-down in self-righteousness and zeal (and get a lot more money from Gates, Walton, Broad, etc.)?

It didn’t take long to get a response to that question here in California — Marshall Tuck, a leading school “reformer” in Los Angeles, has just announced his candidacy for the California Superintendent of Public Instruction. He’ll be opposing incumbent Tom Torlakson, who is probably the most progressive State Superintendent in the country.

So let me get this straight — the “reformer” agenda is opposed by growing majorities in polls; despite spending huge amounts of money in the recent Los Angeles school board elections, “reformers” suffered major defeats; and their candidate for the State Superintendent position in the last election, Gloria Romero, didn’t even make the run-off — yet, despite all that, they’re going to go after a popular incumbent who is supported by a popular Governor (Jerry Brown), who has been publicly opposing a large part of the school “reformer” agenda.

Delusional is the only word I can think of to describe their thinking….

June 5, 2013
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

Quote Of The Day: “Which road will we choose?”

Which road will we choose? is a post by Arthur Camins, director of the Center for Innovation in Engineering and Science Education. It’s related to his recent article in Phi Delta Kappan, Two Roads Diverge for American Education (unfortunately, the article is behind a paywall).

Here’s an excerpt:

Robert-McNamara

December 20, 2012
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

All My 2012 “The Best…” Lists On Education Policy In One Place

I’ve posted quite a few “The Best…” lists on education policy issues this year, and thought readers might find it useful if I collected them all in one post.

You might also be interested in:

A Collection Of “The Best…” Lists On School Reform Issues — 2011

The Best “The Best…” Lists On School Reform Issues — 2010

Here are all my 2012 “Best” lists on education policy issues:

The Best Commentaries On The President’s Proposal For Students To Stay In School Until They’re Eighteen — January, 2012

The Best Critiques Of Ruby Payne

The Best Posts On The Gates’ Funded Measures Of Effective Teaching Report

The Best Posts On The NY Times-Featured Teacher Effectiveness Study

The Best Education Articles From “The Onion” (for a little levity)

The Best Posts About The Most Bizarre Standardized Test Question Ever

The Best Posts & Articles On Building Influence & Creating Change

A Beginning List Of The Best Posts & Articles On Accelerated Reader

The Best Posts On Computer-Graded Essays

The Best Resources On The Idea Of Extending The School Day

The Best Posts Questioning If Direct Instruction Is “Clearly Superior”

The Best Resources On The Importance Of Knowing What You Don’t Know

The Best Resources For Learning About Parent Fundraising & Equity Issues

My Best Posts On Building Parent Engagement In Schools — 2012 (So Far)

The Best Resources On “Race To The Top”

The Best Posts On The Weirdest School Reform Story Of The Year (So Far, At Least)

The Best Posts On “Loss Aversion” & Schools

The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll — 2012

“The Best Posts & Articles On Parent Trigger Movie “Won’t Back Down””

The Best Articles, Videos & Posts On Education Policy In 2012 — So Far

The Best Posts On The “Flipped Classroom” Idea

The Best Resources On The Newly-Released California Educator Excellence Task Force Report

The Best Resources On The Chicago Teachers’ Strike

A Sampling Of The Best Tweets With The #SaidNoTeacherEver Hashtag

The Best Posts & Articles About Why Book “Leveling” Is A Bad Idea

The Best Posts On “Gamification” In Education — Help Me Find More

The Best Articles, Videos & Posts On Education Policy In 2012 — Part Two

The Best Articles Pointing Out That Our Schools Are Not Failing — Please Suggest More

The Best Analyses Of Today’s Release Of TIMSS and PIRLS International Student Test Results

The best — and worst — education news of 2012

September 1, 2012
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

August’s “The Best…” Lists — There Are Now 967 Of Them

Here’s my monthly round-up of new “The Best…” lists I posted this month (you can see all 967 of them categorized here):

The Best Resources, Articles & Blog Posts For Teachers Of ELL’s In 2012 — So Far

The Best Online Learning Games Of 2012 — So Far

The Best English-Language News Sites With An “Ethnic” Focus — Help Me Identify More

The Best Science Sites Of 2012 — So Far

The Best Resources For Learning About Neil Armstrong

The Best Visualizations Of How People Spend Their Days

The Best Sites For Learning About The Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games

The Best Infographics Of 2012 — So Far

The Best Video Collages Of Natural Disasters

The Best Social Studies Sites Of 2012 — So Far

The Best Sites For Learning About Oscar Pistorius

The Best Sites For Learning About The War Of 1812

The Best Articles (And Blog Posts) Offering Practical Advice To Teachers In 2012 — So Far

The Best Multimedia Resources For Introducing Students To The Advantages Of Charts, Graphs & Infographics

The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll — 2012

“The Best Posts & Articles On Parent Trigger Movie “Won’t Back Down””

The Best Funny Movie/TV Clips Of Bad Teachers

The Best Resources On Using Drama In The Classroom

The Best Education Week Posts From My First Year Blogging There…

The Best Articles, Videos & Posts On Education Policy In 2012 — So Far

The Best Posts On The “Flipped Classroom” Idea

The Best Online Videos Showing Teachers In The Classroom

The Best Places On The Web To Find Documentaries (Non-YouTube)

The Best Videos For Educators In 2012 — So Far

The Best Video Clips Of Sneaky Critters — Help Me Find More

The Best Resources On Punctuation

The Best Ways To Create Online Content Easily & Quickly In 2012 — So Far

The Best Resources On GIFs — Please Contribute More

The Best Places Where Students Can Post Book Reviews For Authentic Audiences

 

May 30, 2012
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

This Week’s “Round-Up” Of Good Posts On Education Policy Issues

Here’s a compilation of recent good posts on education policy:

Education and the income gap: Darling-Hammond appeared in The Washington Post. I’m adding it to The Best Places To Learn What Impact A Teacher & Outside Factors Have On Student Achievement.

TFA Teachers: How Long Do They Teach? Why Do They Leave? is from Education Week. I’m adding it to The Best Posts & Articles Raising Concerns About Teach For America.

Computer Scoring Open Ended History Questions is by Tom Hoffman.

Robot Eyes As Good As Humans When Grading Essays is a strange title for an NPR interview with NY Times writer Michael Winerip.

I’m adding both to The Best Posts On Computer-Graded Essays.

In New Federal Program to Reward Teachers, Flawed Assumptions is by Stephen Lazar.

The Common Core: The Technocrats Re-engineer Learning is by Anthony Cody. I’m adding it to The Best Articles Sharing Concerns About Common Core Standards.

Common Core standards drive wedge in education circles is from USA Today. I’m adding it to the same list.

Value-Added Versus Observations, Part One: Reliability is from The Shanker Blog. I’m adding it to The Best Resources For Understanding How To Interpret Education Research.

What new research on extended school day says appeared in The Washington Post.

How NOT to extend the school day was also in The Washington Post.

I’m adding both to The Best Resources On The Idea Of Extending The School Day.

Note to SIG Schools: Good Lists ≠ Good Outcomes is by Robert Slavin at Education Week.

Implications for Policy Are Not So Clear is by Douglas Harris and appeared in Education Next. I’m adding it to The Best Posts On The NY Times-Featured Teacher Effectiveness Study.

March 19, 2012
by Larry Ferlazzo
1 Comment

“Round-Up” Of Recent Good School Reform Posts & Articles

December 6, 2011
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

A Collection Of “The Best…” Lists On School Reform Issues — 2011

Since I have published so many “The Best…” lists, I thought it might be helpful to readers if I posted a few year-end collections.

You might also be interested in The Best “The Best…” Lists On School Reform Issues — 2010.

Here is A Collection Of “The Best…” Lists On School Reform Issues — 2011:

The Best Posts On Attracting The “Best Candidates” To Teaching

The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll — August, 2011

The Best Articles Describing Alternatives To High-Stakes Testing — Help Me Find More

The Best Commentaries On Steven Brill’s Book, “Class Warfare”

The Best Posts & Articles About The New York Court Decision Releasing Teacher Ratings

The Best Posts About Trust & Education

The Best Posts & Articles On The Save Our Schools March

The Best Articles & Posts On Education Policy In 2011 — So Far — July, 2011

The Best Posts About Public Officials (& Non-Elected “Reformers) Sending Their Children To Private Schools

The Best Posts & Articles About Compromise

The Best Resources For Learning About Small Learning Communities

The Best Posts For Learning About The NEA’s New Policy Statement on “Teacher Evaluation and Accountability”

The Best Posts & Articles About The Atlanta Testing Scandal

The Best Resources For Helping Students (& The Rest Of Us) Learn The Concept Of Not Blaming Others

The Best Posts Responding To David Brooks Criticism Of Diane Ravitch (& Many Of The Rest Of Us)

The Best Resources For Learning About The “Next Generation” Of State Testing

The Best Resources For Learning About The Four School Improvement Grant Models

The Best Posts/Articles On National Research Council Finding That Carrots & Sticks Don’t Work

The Best Posts About Attrition Rates At So-Called “Miracle” Schools

The Best Posts Discussing Arrogance & School Reform

A Beginning “The Best…” List On The Dangers Of Privatizing Public Education

The Best Resources For Learning About The “Achievement Gap”

The Best Posts & Articles About “Erase To The Top”

The Best Posts & Articles To Learn About “Fundamental Attribution Error” & Schools

The Best Articles Providing An “Overall” Perspective On Education Policy

The Best Posts & Articles About The Importance Of Teacher (& Student) Working Conditions

The Best Posts Debunking The Myth Of “Five Great Teachers In A Row”

The Best Posts Responding To Bill Gates’ Appallingly Clueless Op-Ed Piece

The Best Resources For Learning Why School Vouchers Are A Bad Idea

The Best Resources For Learning About Attacks On Teachers & Other Public Sector Workers In Wisconsin

The Best Places To Get Reliable, Valid, Accessible & Useful Education Data

The Best Posts About Michelle Rhee’s Exaggerated Test Scores

The Best Posts & Articles Raising Concerns About Teach For America

The Best Articles Sharing Concerns About Common Core Standards

The Best Resources Showing Why We Need To Be “Data-Informed” & Not “Data-Driven”

The Best Articles For Helping To Understand Why Teacher Tenure Is Important

The Best Resources For Learning Why Teachers Unions Are Important

The Best Posts & Articles About Videotaping Teachers In The Classroom

The Best Resources For Learning About The Role Of Private Foundations In Education Policy

The Best Posts & Articles Explaining Why Schools Should Not Be Run Like Businesses

The Best Resources For Learning Why Teacher Merit Pay Is A Bad Idea

The Best Sites For Learning That Money Does Matter For Schools

The Best Resources To Learn About Finland’s Education System

The Best Places To Learn What Impact A Teacher (& Outside Factors) Have On Student Achievement

November 13, 2011
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

This Week’s “Round-Up” Of Good School Reform Articles & Posts

September 5, 2011
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

August’s “The Best…” Lists (There Are Now 763 Of Them)

Here’s my monthly round-up of new “The Best…” lists I posted in August (you can see all 763 of them categorized here):

The Best “Fun” Sites You Can Use For Learning, Too — 2011 (So Far) — August, 2011

The Best Websites For English Language Learner Students In 2011 — So Far — August, 2011

The Best Resources, Articles & Blog Posts For Teachers Of ELL’s In 2011 — So Far
— August, 2011

The Best Sixteen Basic Sites For Beginning English Language Learners (Revised) — August, 2011

The Best Sites To Download Free ESL Board Game Templates — August, 2011

The Best Sites For Helping ELL’s Learn About Completing Forms & Applications — August, 2011

The Best Resources For Learning About Common Core Standards & English Language Learners — August, 2011

The Best Art & Music Sites Of 2011 — So Far — August, 2011

A Beginning List Of The Best Folklore & Myth Sites — August, 2011

The Best Tools For Analyzing Census Data — August, 2011

The Best Sites For Learning About The Martin Luther King Memorial — August, 2011

The Best Web Resources About Somalia’s Drought & Famine — August, 2011

The Best Reflective Posts I’ve Written About My Teaching Practice In 2011 — So Far — August, 2011

The Best Posts About Trust & Education — August, 2011

The Best Resources For Planning The First Day Of School — August, 2011

The Best Sites For Finding Folktales To Teach “Life Lessons” — August, 2011

The Best Resources For Helping Students (& The Rest Of Us) Learn The Concept Of Not Blaming Others — August, 2011

The Best Posts & Articles About The New York Court Decision Releasing Teacher Ratings — August, 2011

The Best Theory Of Knowledge Resources In 2011 — So Far — August, 2011

The Best Commentaries On Steven Brill’s Book, “Class Warfare” — August, 2011

The Best Online “Countdown” Timers — August, 2011

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2011 — So Far — August, 2011


The Best Articles (And Blog Posts) Offering Practical Advice To Teachers In 2011 — So Far
— August, 2011

The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll — August, 2011

The Best Articles Describing Alternatives To High-Stakes Testing — Help Me Find More — August, 2011

The Best Posts On Attracting The “Best Candidates” To Teaching — August, 2011

The Best Comic Strips For Students & Teachers In 2011 — So Far — August, 2011

The Best Ways To Upload A Video To The Web — And A Question — August, 2011

The Best Research Available On The Use Of Technology In Schools — August, 2011

The Best Videos For Educators In 2011 — So Far — August, 2011

Part Sixty-Three Of The Best Ways To Create Online Content Easily & Quickly — August, 2011

Best “Tweets” Of 2011 — So Far — September, 2011

The Best Resources On ESL/EFL/ELL Error Correction — September, 2011

August 28, 2011
by Larry Ferlazzo
2 Comments

This Week’s “Round-Up” Of Good School Reform Posts & Articles

Here are some useful school reform-related posts and articles that have been published recently:

Naive To Print Teachers’ Scores, Says TFA Founder
is from Alexander Russo, who reports that Teach For America’s Wendy Kopp opposes the public release of teacher ratings. That’s good to hear though, as Alexander mentions, “I wish Kopp had been so clear back a year ago when this was all first being debated — it would have been brave and right of her…” I’m adding it to The Best Posts & Articles About The New York Court Decision Releasing Teacher Ratings.

N.Y. appeals court rules that teacher ratings can be public is from The Los Angeles Times and I’m adding it to the same list.

International Rankings That Reformers Ignore: The Children Left Behind is by Larry Cuban. I’m adding it to The Best Sites For Getting Some Perspective On International Test Comparison Demagoguery.

Is “Racing to the Top” Even Possible, Arne? is by Bill Ferriter.

What Americans Think About Teachers Versus What They’re Hearing is from The Shanker Blog. I’m adding it to The Best Posts/Articles On This Year’s Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup Education Poll.

The Missing Link In School Reform shares important research about the role of trust and the development of social capital in schools. I’m adding it to The Best Posts About Trust & Education.

I’m not going to make a separate “The Best…” list related to Steve Brill’s new book on school reform, “Class Warfare.” However, here are three articles that join Steve Brill’s Report Card on School Reform, the New York Times book review, as the best commentaries that I’ve seen it:

Teachers Get Little Say in a Book About Them is from The New York Times.

Steve Brill’s blinkered view of education is from Reuters.

Should we really expect schools to cure poverty? is also from Reuters.

Why Are Finland’s Schools Successful? is from The Smithsonian Magazine. I’m adding it to The Best Resources To Learn About Finland’s Education System.

August 16, 2011
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

Gallup Poll On Education Issues Just Released

Every year since 1969 Phi Delta Kappa and Gallup have done a poll on education issues. I’ve previously posted on the results from the last two years.

They just released this year’s results and, instead of reinventing the wheel, I’m just going to suggest you go over to the Hechinger Ed blog to read their summary.  (USA Today also has an article on the results).

Here is one interesting result:

Most people trust public-school teachers and want them to have more freedom in the classroom. Even though a solid majority (68 percent) of respondents said most of the news they hear about teachers is bad, an even higher percentage (71 percent) said they trust public-school teachers to do their jobs. And more still—73 percent—said teachers should be given greater flexibility and not have to follow a strict curriculum.

February 11, 2011
by Larry Ferlazzo
6 Comments

The Best Posts & Articles Raising Concerns About Teach For America

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Teach For America is celebrating their twenty-year anniversary this weekend (see Not-To-Be-Missed Reports From Teach For America Celebration). Contrarian that I am, I thought that this would be perfect timing for a “The Best..” list that raising concerns about their work.

Here are my choices for The Best Posts & Articles Raising Concerns About Teach For America:

Last year, when our new Superintendent wanted to invite Teach For American to come to Sacramento, I wrote a fairly extensive post about it — Why I Oppose Teach For America Coming To Sacramento.

Happily, I was able to write this post shortly afterwards — Teach For America NOT Coming To Sacramento.

By far, the best article on this topic has been published by Rethinking Schools. It’s called Looking Past the Spin: Teach for America, and is written by Barbara Miner. Unfortunately, you have to register to see it all, but it is free. (It appears that they have the article on a new page — at least temporarily — where you don’t have to register to read it)

A new look at Teach for America is by Valerie Strauss at The Washington Post.

Why the Love/Hate Relationship with TFA? by Claus von Zastrow offers a somewhat more nuanced view of TFA.

Does Teach For America Deliver Systemic Education Reform? is by Anthony Cody at Ed Week.

What football can teach school reformers is an interesting guest post at The Washington Post.

Teach For America: A Review of the Evidence comes from The National Education Policy Center.

Veteran teacher: My problem(s) with Teach For America is from Valerie Strauss’ blog at the Washington Post.

Ravitch: The Problem with Teach For America is a post by….Diane Ravitch at Valerie Strauss’ blog.

Marie Levey-Pabst: Will the Teach For America Elite Save the Poor? is a guest post in Anthony Cody’s Ed Week blog.

Poise & Ivy: Judging Teachers by their Credentials is from Nancy Flanagan.

Teach for America 20th Anniversary Alumni Summit: Conclusions, Questions, and other Ruminations comes from Education Notes Online

Teach for America alum: TFA’s impact on my school appeared on Valerie Strauss’ blog in The Washington Post.

Take Me to Your Leader is by Nancy Flanagan at Ed Week.

Teach For America: From Service Group to Industry is by Rachel Levy.

What happened to my TFA? is by Gary Rubenstein.

An Ordinary Teacher Talks to Teach for America offers some insightful commentary.

TFA Founder Kopp Dodges Questions with “Read my book.” is by David B. Cohen.

Big expansion, big questions for Teach for America is from The Boston Globe.

Huntsville Takes a Closer Look at Teach For America’s “Research” is from Living In Dialogue at Education Week.

Philip Kovacs: Teach For America Research Fails the Test is from Living In Dialogue at Ed Week.

Research Suggests Teach For America Does Not Belong in Huntsville from Living In Dialogue at Ed Week.

Phil Kovacs Responds to the Latest Research on Teach For America is from Ed Week.

Deepening the Debate over Teach For America is from Anthony Cody at Education Week.

TFA Teachers: How Long Do They Teach? Why Do They Leave? is from Education Week.

Retooling Teach For America is from The Los Angeles Times.

Teach For America & Baking “Bread In An Instant Without The Ovens”

Has Teach for America betrayed its mission? is from NBC.

Perpetuating Inequity: New Study Shows Attrition a Huge Problem for TFA recruits is from Reconsidering TFA.

Wendy Fails ‘The Giggle Test’ is by Gary Rubenstein.

Why California Tightened Oversight of New Teachers is from Diane Ravitch’s blog.

TFA Faces a California Showdown Over Qualifications to Teach English Learners is by Anthony Cody.

More Vetoes of Teach For America Needed is from John Wilson.

The Fight Ahead is by EduShyster, and is a very good piece on Teach For America.

Teach for America criticized for apparent stance on education policy is from The Los Angeles Times.

A new study on Teach For America came out and received widespread attention. Here are two posts that give a clear-eyed perspective on it:

TFA Teachers Perform Well in a New Study — But Teacher Experience Still Matters is by Dana Goldstein.

On the New TFA Study: People, Calm Down! is by Jersey Jazzman.

Forever young: the new teaching career is by Mike Rose.

Top Ten Reasons Not to Contract With Teach For America is from John Wilson at Education Week.

Teach for America rises as political powerhouse is from Politico.

I Won’t Say ‘Don’t Join Teach For America’ (Yet) is by Camika Royal.

Here are two important posts about what’s happening in Newark, and Teach For America’s role in it:

What’s TFA’s Role In Mass Dismissals of Teachers? is by John Thompson.

TFA in Newark: “Act as if the facts matter” is from The Commonal.


This took Teach For America 24 years to figure out?
is by Valerie Strauss.

A Primer for Engaging Teach For America Supporters is from Cloaking Inequity.

Has Teach for America reached its Waterloo? is by Amy Dean.

Teachers are losing their jobs, but Teach for America’s expanding. What’s wrong with that? is from The Hechinger Report.

Additional suggestions are welcome.

If you found this post useful, you might want to consider subscribing to this blog for free.

You might also want to explore the over 600 other “The Best…” lists I’ve compiled.

December 28, 2010
by Larry Ferlazzo
2 Comments

The Best Places To Learn What Impact A Teacher & Outside Factors Have On Student Achievement

'Lockland High School, entrance 10' photo (c) 2007, Paul Fisher - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

It’s not uncommon to hear someone inaccurately state that the teacher has the biggest influence on student achievement — period. Of course, the true statement is that — of the in-school factors — teachers have the biggest influence. On top of that, research has shown that over two-thirds of the factors that influence student achievement occur out of school.

That’s not to say that we shouldn’t continually look at ways to help teachers become better. It does mean that we should also figure out ways to change the outside factors, too — lack of affordable housing, health care, safety. That is one of the main messages of my book, Building Parent Engagement In Schools, which offers practical suggestions on how schools can work with parents on these issues. It also means that placing all the blame on teachers, which some “school reformers” are prone to do, is disingenuous.

In addition to my book, I thought I’d bring together links to other resources that provide research (and analyze it) about this topic. Feel free to offer additional suggestions.

Here are my choices for The Best Places To Learn What Impact A Teacher (& Outside Factors) Have On Student Achievement:

How To Fix Our Schools by Richard Rothstein

Teachers Matter, But So Do Words from the Shanker blog (thanks to Alexander Russo for the tip)

The Family: America’s Smallest School from The Educational Testing Service

I’m embedding this very good thirty minute video of a talk by one of my favorite education writers and researchers, Richard Rothstein. Here’s how the Education Testing Service describes it:

Rothstein, a former New York Times national education columnist, discusses the false narrative about public education — especially urban schools — that currently exists. Rothstein maintains that many education reform proposals, especially those that focus on teacher accountability, are based on a misinterpretation and misuse of data. He stresses the direct correlation between poverty and educational failure.

Rothstein makes many important points but, because of some of the key ones he makes, I’m adding the video to this list.

Experiences of poverty and educational disadvantage is the title of a good report from the Rowntree Foundation

Poverty and Potential: Out-of-School Factors and School Success is from The National Educational Policy Center.

Thanks to Paul Thomas for the tips on the last two links.

A Big Fish In A Small Causal Pond is by Matthew Di Carlo at the Shanker Blog.

Joe Nocera at The New York Times takes on school reformers in a column:

…school reform won’t fix everything. Though some poor students will succeed, others will fail. Demonizing teachers for the failures of poor students, and pretending that reforming the schools is all that is needed, as the reformers tend to do, is both misguided and counterproductive.

Over the long term, fixing our schools is going to involve a lot more than, well, just fixing our schools. In the short term, however, the reform movement could use something else: a dose of humility about what it can accomplish — and what it can’t.

Is Poverty the Key Factor in Student Outcomes? is from The Texas Observer.

Says Who? Lots of Folks, Actually… is by Robert Pondiscio. He’s gathered quite a few quotes from school reformers on the topic of the role of poverty and the role of teachers. I’m adding it to The Best Places To Learn What Impact A Teacher & Outside Factors Have On Student Achievement. He also raises some questions about a post written by Nancy Flanagan. You can find her response in the comments section there and in her post here.

Is Poverty the Key Factor in Student Outcomes? is an article and video from The Texas Tribune.

Closing the Poverty Gap: The Way Forward for Education Reform is the title of guest column in Ed Week by Massachusetts Secretary of Education Paul Reville.

After citing some pretty irrefutable data documenting the role of poverty in student achievement, here are some excerpts from what he writes:

Some want to make the absurd argument that the reason low-income youngsters do poorly is that, mysteriously, all the incompetency in our education systems has coincidentally aggregated around low income students. In this view, all we need to do is scrub the system of incompetency and all will be well. An equally absurd variant on this theme is that poor performance in low-income districts is a function of, again coincidental, misalignment between state standards and local curriculum. Get these in line and all will be fine say the ideologues. Others want to banish any discussion of socio-economic status (SES) and educational performance for fear that it suggests that SES is destiny. It does not. We all know of notable individual exceptions to this rule, but they are exceptions. The averages tell the story….

It is now blatantly apparent to me and other education activists, ranging form Geoffrey Canada to Richard Rothstein to Linda Darling-Hammond, that the strategy of instructional improvement will not, on average, enable us to overcome the barriers to student learning posed by the conditions of poverty.

As others have argued, we need “a broader, bolder” approach, one that meets every child where he or she is and gives to each one the quality and quantity of support and instruction needed to attain the standards. Those of us who have the privileges of affluence know how to do this at scale with our children. We wrap services and supports around these children from the pre-natal period through their twenties. We know how to do it, but do we have the will to do it for “other people’s children”? And do we know how to institutionalize the necessary services and supports that are best provided through families?

Why Attention Will Return to Non-School Factors is a guest commentary in Ed Week.

Bolder, Broader Action: Strategies for Closing the Poverty Gap is by Paul Reville.

We need to fix the economy to fix education was written by David Sirota and appeared in Salon.

The hard bigotry of low expectations and low priorities is by Gary Ravani at The Thoughts on Public Education blog.

Can Teachers Alone Overcome Poverty? Steven Brill Thinks So is by Dana Goldstein.

What No School Can Do is a ten year old article recently recommended by Walt Gardner at Ed Week.

Public education’s biggest problem gets worse is by Valerie Strauss at The Washington Post.

Why school reform can’t ignore poverty’s toll appeared in Valerie Strauss’ blog at the Washington Post.

NCLB bill: The problem with ‘continuous improvement’ is by Richard Rothstein.

A broader and bolder approach uses education to break the cycle of poverty is by Pedro Noguera.

In Which I Cite My Sources in an Attempt to Deflate the Hot Air from the Teacher Quality Debate is by Dana Goldstein.

Education and Poverty:Confronting the Evidence is by Helen F. Ladd.

Why Are the Rich So Interested in Public-School Reform? is by Judith Warner at TIME.

Class Matters. Why Won’t We Admit It? is an op ed in The New York Times about poverty’s effect on our students. Here’s how it ends:

Yes, we need to make sure that all children, and particularly disadvantaged children, have access to good schools, as defined by the quality of teachers and principals and of internal policies and practices.

But let’s not pretend that family background does not matter and can be overlooked. Let’s agree that we know a lot about how to address the ways in which poverty undermines student learning. Whether we choose to face up to that reality is ultimately a moral question.

Student Achievement, Poverty and “Toxic Stress” is by Robert Pondiscio.

Can Schools Solve Societal Problems? is from Learning First.

How to predict a student’s SAT score: Look at the parents’ tax return is from Daniel Pink.

Why Does Family Wealth Affect Learning? is by Dan Willingham.

A new poverty-doesn’t-really-matter-much argument is by Valerie Strauss at the Washington Post.

Cartoon: Burden – Or Excuse? is a great cartoon you can find on This Week In Education.

Education and the income gap: Darling-Hammond appeared in The Washington Post.

A Significant Error That Policymakers Commit is a post by Larry Cuban that I’m sure will be a candidate for the best educational commentary of the year.

In it, he discusses differences between “good” teaching and “successful” teaching, and describes “successful” learning. It’s too difficult — at least for me — to summarize succinctly, so I’d recommend you read his entire post.

Here are his final two paragraphs:

Not only does this policymaker error about quality classroom instruction confuse the personal traits of the teacher with teaching, it also nurtures a heroic view of school improvement where superstars (e.g., Geoffrey Canada in “Waiting for Superman,” Jaime Escalante of “Stand and Deliver”, Erin Gruwell of “Freedom Writers”) labor day in and day out to get their students to ace AP Calculus tests and become accomplished writers and achieve in Harlem schools. Neither doctors, lawyers, soldiers, nor nuclear physicists can depend upon superstars among them to get their important work done every day. Nor should all teachers have to be heroic. Policymakers attributing quality far more to individual traits in teachers than to the context in which they teach leads to squishing “good” teaching with “successful” learning doing even further collateral damage to the profession by setting up the expectation that only heroes need apply.

By stripping away from “good” learning essential factors of students’ motivation, the contexts in which they live, and the opportunities they have to learn in school–federal, state, and district policymakers inadvertently twist the links between teaching and learning into a simpleminded formula thereby mis-educating the public they serve while encouraging a generation of idealistic newcomers to become classroom heroes who end up deserting schools in wholesale numbers within a few years because they come to understand that “good” teaching does not lead automatically to “successful” learning. Fenstermacher and Richardson help us parse “quality teaching” into distinctions between “good” and “successful” teaching and learning while revealing clearly the error that policymakers have made and continue to do so.

The fantasies driving school reform: A primer for education graduates is by Richard Rothstein.

Berliner on Education and Inequality is from Diane Ravitch’s blog.

The Danger Of Denying The Coleman Report is by Gary Rubinstein.

Responding to the Gates Foundation: How do we Consider Evidence of Learning in Teacher Evaluations? is by Anthony Cody.

Dialogue with the Gates Foundation: Can Schools Defeat Poverty by Ignoring It? is from Anthony Cody.

Wow, What A Chart On International Education!

Public school grades – what’s really being graded? is from The Oklahoma Policy Institute (thanks to Wesley Fryer for the tip). This is a very interesting piece.

“8.5% of the variation in student achievement is due to teacher characteristics”

Research: Blame It On The Lead? is from This Week In Education.

Do Teachers Undercut Our “Relevance” By Pointing Out Other Factors That Affect Student Achievement?

Teacher Quality Mania: Backward by Design is by P.L. Thomas.

Martin Luther King Jr. Understood Poverty and So Do Teachers is by John Wilson at Ed Week.

New Research Shows Why Social Emotional Learning (SEL) and Character Education Are Not Enough

Quote Of The Day: “No Rich Child Left Behind”

Quote Of The Day: “The Opportunity Gap”

The cost of child poverty: $500 billion a year is from The Washington Post.

Social Emotional Learning Can Help, But More Research Shows It’s Not Enough

Education and poverty, again is by Matt Bruenig.

How Poverty Impacts Students’ Test Scores, In 4 Graphs is from The Huffington Post.

Excellent Pie Chart On What Influences Student Test Scores

New US Dept. of Ed Finds That “Less Effective Teaching” Responsible For 2-4 Percent Of Achievement Gap

Another Nail In VAM’s Coffin?


“Kids who get health insurance are more likely to finish high school and college”

Morality, Validity, and the Design of Instructionally Sensitive Tests is by David Berliner and appeared in Ed Week. Here’s an excerpt:

A consensus is that outside of school factors account for about 60% of the variance in student test scores, while schools account for about 20% of that variance (Haertel, 2013; Borman and Dowling, 2012; Coleman et al., 1966). Further, about half of the variance accounted for by schools is attributed to teachers. So, on tests that may be insensitive to instruction, teachers appear to account for about 10% of the variance we see in student achievement test scores (American Statistical Association, 2014). Thus outside-of-school factors appear 6 times more powerful than teachers in effecting student achievement.

David Berliner Responds to Economists Who Discount Role of Child Poverty is from Diane Ravitch’s blog.

Additional suggestions are welcome.

If you found this post useful, you might want to consider subscribing to this blog for free.

You might also want to explore the nearly 600 other “The Best…” lists I’ve compiled.

August 25, 2010
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

Gallup Poll On Education Issues Released

The annual survey on education issues conducted by Phi Delta Kappa International and the Gallup Organization was released today, and it had some interesting results.

You can read an Ed Week summary here, and see an excellent longer summary from the pollsters themselves here.

A few highlights:

* Only 34% of those polled give President Obama an A or B on his education agenda (for my feelings, see “Obama’s Awful Education Plan”)

* “Three of four Americans oppose the idea of paying students money to read books, attend school, or strive for better grades. Consistent with this finding, only one in four parents said they paid their children to do better in school.” (for my feelings, see The Problem With “Bribing Students”)

* Three of four Americans believe success in school is based on effort and not natural ability. (This is in keeping with the lesson I teach on the brain being more like a muscle that gets stronger as we exercise it)

There’s a lot of interesting data in the summary….

July 9, 2010
by Larry Ferlazzo
2 Comments

The Best Resources For Learning About Effective Student & Teacher Assessments

'critical thinking rubric' photo (c) 2007, Rob Loftis - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

As I’ve mentioned, I’m part of a group of teachers working with The Center For Teaching Quality that’s preparing a policy report on Teacher Working Conditions and how they relate to student learning.

I’ve previously shared some of the materials I’ve found useful in my research — see The Best Resources For Learning About The “Value-Added” Approach Towards Teacher Evaluation. You might also be interested in The Best Posts For Learning About The NEA’s New Policy Statement on “Teacher Evaluation and Accountability.” Here’s another one: The Best Articles Describing Alternatives To High-Stakes Testing.

Also: The Best Resources On The Newly-Released California Educator Excellence Task Force Report.

I thought I’d share some more resources in this new list. My hope is that not only will readers find them useful, but that you’ll be able to suggest more.  I’ll be working on a report covering this topic next week, so thanks in advance for your recommendations.

Here are my choices for The Best Resources For Learning About Effective Student & Teacher Assessments:

STUDENT ASSESSMENTS:

Today, Jay Mathews wrote a column in the Washington Post titled Intriguing alternative to rating schools by tests. He speaks very positively about the student assessment process used by the New York Performance Standards Consortium.

The term “performance-based assessment” is a term used to describe one way to evaluate student achievement (the Consortium’s process would fit into this category). This basically means that students are evaluated on work they have “constructed” as opposed to choosing from a list of pre-determined answers. This could mean a writing assessment, similar to what is done in Vermont or Kentucky, or filling-in the blanks in a cloze (there are usually multiple appropriate responses), or describing how a student would develop a science experiment. The Stanford Center For Opportunity Policy In Education has developed a brief that lays-out the case for performance-based assessment and how it might be implemented. You can also learn more about this topic here.

The Other Kind of Testing is a good column by Walt Gardner in Education Week. It’s about “performance-based assessment” for students

Monty Neill from Fair Test has had a commentary published in Ed Week titled A Better Way to Assess Students and Evaluate Schools.

Judge Students’ Performance by Their “Greatest Hits Collection,” Say Some Educators is an article by Linda Blackford.

NEA Partners With Teach Plus & Creates Online Rating System For Student Assessments

Focus on portfolios: 4 advantages of alternative assessment is by Adam Simpson.

5 steps to using self-assessment in the classroom is by Adam Simpson.

Creating Systems of Assessment for Deeper Learning is by Linda Darling-Hammond and others.

Assessing English language learners is my post at The British Council’s TeachingEnglish site.

Self-assessment through learning journals – Chrysa Papalazarou is from The British Council.

24 Assessments that don’t suck… is from Paul Bogush.

Is this really how we should test reading development in kids? is from The Washington Post.

TEACHER EVALUATIONS:

The Accomplished California Teachers (ACT) has published a report titled A Quality Teacher In Every Classroom: Creating A Teacher Evaluation System That Works For California.

Robert Marzano talks about teacher evaluation is his upcoming book, “Supervising the Art and Science of Teaching: A New Approach To Lesson Observation and Lesson Design.” In a speech to the National Association of Secondary School Principals, he made some great points (you can see the article about his speech in this PDF — scroll down to page four):

School leaders can’t use a checklist approach to observing teachers and providing feedback. Teacher observation requires a comprehensive model that acknowledges the segments that make up a lesson.

 

A comprehensive observation method includes teachers’ self-reflection, walkthroughs and formal observations by principals and peers…The goal…is for feedback to be part of the culture of the school.

In a recent article in Ed Week, James Stigler writes about the “lesson study” process in Japan, where teachers covering the same content meet regularly, develop their methods of student evaluation, and then meet together to examine the results. He contrasts that system of teacher accountability with those presently being suggested by Gates, Duncan, etc. He says W. Edwards Deming would call what Gates and Duncan want “the inspection method.” In reality, Deming says, “real and continuous improvement occurs only when the workers themselves study outcome variability and the processes that produce it.”

A study has just come out of Chicago which reinforces the potential effectiveness of using trained teachers to give feedback to colleagues. In the study, teachers were far more demanding than principals using the same evaluation system. It’s still too early to tell, though, about its effect on student achievement. This kind of system is apparently called Peer Assistance and Review.

The National Education Association has published a report titled “Teacher Evaluation Systems: The Window For Opportunity and Reform.”

Ed Week presents a very short summary of the framework for a “multiple measures” teacher assessment system recommended by Randi Weingarten, president of the United Federation of Teachers.

Challenges in Evaluating Special Education Teachers and English Language Learner Specialists is the title of a new report from the National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality. I haven’t had time yet to carefully review it, but at first glance it looks pretty good. In fact, I think it makes some good points that are relevant to evaluation issues for any teacher.

I’ve previously written about some simple advice on how teachers can evaluate themselves in What’s A Good Way For A Teacher To Evaluate Him/Herself?

In this blog post I share what evaluation methods have been helpful to me: Evaluating Teachers In Order To Fire Them?

Here’s a very interesting article written by a former director of research from Education Testing Service. Testing can help evaluate teachers, but it’s not the sole method: Too many factors affect how students perform, and lots of good teachers work hard for minor improvements is a long headline for a short, good article.

Here’s an excerpt:

Does this mean that testing makes no contribution to teaching? Absolutely not. Test scores tell teachers which students need help and where help is needed. And they also can tell school boards which schools need a bigger budget. Or a new principal.

But in evaluating a teacher, priority should be given to expert judgment. Principals and department heads worthy of their position know which teachers care about their students and know the strengths and needs of each one, which teachers are dedicated to what they teach and have advanced knowledge in the field, and which teachers painstakingly plan their lessons.

I’m going to add a guest post I wrote for The Washington Post titled “The best kind of teacher evaluation.”

Evaluating Teacher Effectiveness: How Teacher Performance Assessments Can Measure and Improve Teaching is a new report by Linda Darling-Hammond for the Center for American Progress.

Real ways to improve ‘teacher effectiveness’ is a guest op-ed in The San Francisco Chronicle.

Evaluations That Help Teachers Learn is an article in this month’s issue of Educational Leadership. It’s by Charlotte Danielson.

Getting Teacher Assessment Right: What Policymakers Can Learn From Researchis the title of what looks like a good new report from the National Education Policy Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder, Colorado. I have to admit I’ve only had a chance to skim it, but it appears to have a lot of wisdom.

Teachers: How do We Propose to Measure Student Outcomes? is a very good post by Anthony Cody at Ed Week.

Why politicians should spend time at school is another piece from Valerie Strauss’ blog.

Overconfidence in the Value of Measurement is by Walt Gardner at Education Week

The Test Generation is an article by Dana Goldstein that was just published in The American Prospect magazine.

Teacher Evaluations: Where Do We Go From Here? is a post from Learning First.

Linda Darling-Hammond on Teacher Evaluations through Student Testing appeared on the blog for NBC’s Education Nation.

5 reasons parents should oppose evaluating teachers on test scores appeared in Valerie Strauss’ Washington Post blog.

A Glut of New Reports Raise Doubts About Obama’s Teacher Agenda is by Dana Goldstein.

Helping Teachers Help Themselves is a New York Times article about teacher evaluation in Montgomery County, Maryland.

Teacher Evaluations: Don’t Begin Assembly Until You Have All The Parts is an excellent post by Matthew Di Carlo at The Shanker Blog.

How to Fix Accountability in U.S. Schools is by Justin Baeder at Ed Week.

EWA Research Brief: What Studies Say About Teacher Effectiveness comes from the Education Writers Association, and seems to have a pretty summary of research. Even though it covers a lot of areas, I decided to put in this “The Best…” list.

Letter to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan Concerning Evaluation of Teachers and Principals comes from the National Education Policy Center.

Take your SGP and VAMit, Damn it! is by School Finance 101.

Linda Darling-Hammond’s Getting teacher evaluation right at The Answer Sheet may be THE piece on teacher evaluation.


Praise for peer evaluations
comes from Thoughts on Public Education.

Why Evaluate Teachers and Doctors Differently? is by Walt Gardner.

Conversations with Obama, Duncan on assessment appeared in Valerie Strauss’ blog.

Getting Serious About Teacher Evaluation is from Education Week.

Reforming the Teaching Profession: A Look at Teacher Quality Policy is a video of UC Professor Jesse Rothstein.

NEA Announces “New Action Agenda”

Taking Teacher Quality Seriously: A Collaborative Approach to Teacher Evaluation is from Rethinking Schools.

Using Standardized Tests to Evaluate Teachers is by Walt Gardner at Education Week.

Forging ahead with nutty teacher evaluation plan appeared in The Washington Post.

“Teaching Quality and California’s Future”

Opinion: Creating teacher evaluations systems Californians can believe in appeared in the San Jose Mercury News.

Getting Teacher Evaluation Right: A Background Paper for Policy Makers is by Linda Darling-Hammond and colleagues.

Interesting Interview With Charlotte Danielson

Evaluating Teacher Evaluation is by Linda Darling-Hammond and others.

“Socrates Fails Teacher Evaluation”

“Just Effective”: Is that good enough? is from Nancy Flanagan’s blog at Education Week.

“Evaluate Me, Please”

Hot Off The Press! The Best Piece Yet Published On Teacher Evaluation


Taking Teacher Quality Seriously: A collaborative approach to teacher evaluation
is by Stan Karp at Rethinking Schools.

This twelve minute video of Anthony Bryk from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching is one of the best things I’ve seen about teacher evaluation. Among other points, he compares summative teacher evaluation with teacher improvement.

I learned about it from Matthew Di Carlo at The Shanker Blog, a “must-read” blog for educators.

It is (Mostly) About Improvement from EdWriters on Vimeo.

Can Teacher Evaluation Improve Teaching? is from Education Next.

What research really says on teacher evaluation is by Richard Rothstein.

How Using Test Scores To Evaluate Teachers Hurts Students

Assessing Ourselves To Death is by Matthew Di Carlo.

Sabotage as a Professional Responsibility is by Justin Baeder.

Thompson: Value-Added vs Objective Evaluations is by John Thompson.

Why Teacher Evaluation Shouldn’t Rest on Student Test Scores is from Fair Test.

A better way to grade teachers is by By Linda Darling-Hammond and Edward Haertel and appeared in the LA Times.

San Jose Unified, teachers reach breakthrough evaluation, pay plan is from Ed Source

The newest rhetoric on teacher evaluation — and why it is nonsense comes from The Washington Post.

Making Decisions About Teachers Based on Imperfect Data

Evaluating Teachers of ELLs in the Age of the CCSS is from Colorin Colorado.

The MET Project: The Wrong 45 Million Dollar Question is from ASCD Educational Leadership (thanks to Alfie Kohn for the tip).

3 Evaluation Issues We Need to Be Talking About is by Barnett Berry.

What’s Next: Evaluation As Narrative is by Barnett Berry.

Just how many ineffective teachers are out there?
is by Aaron Pallas.

Quote Of The Day: Dana Goldstein On History Of Teacher Evaluations

You Can’t Fix Teacher Eval Without Fixing Teacher Supply is by Paul Bruno.

On Teacher Evaluations, Between Myth And Fact Lies Truth is from The Shanker Blog.

Quote Of The Day: “How Do You Evaluate Teachers Who Change Lives?”

Hidden power of teacher awards is by Jay Mathews at The Washington Post.

Quote Of The Day: Using Test Scores To Evaluate Teachers


Teacher evaluation panel 2013 Education Writers Association National Seminar
is by Ray Salazar, and has some interesting thoughts on teacher evaluations. He also links to a very insightful post he previously wrote on Doug Lemov’s teaching strategies.

San Jose teachers, board adopt landmark teacher evaluation system is from Ed Source.

Evaluating The Evaluators is by Barnett Berry.

Policymakers, do your homework on evaluation reform is an important post by Barnett Berry.

Student achievement and teacher evaluations: The math doesn’t add up? is by Scott McLeod.

“Performance Anxiety”: Improving Measures for Teacher Evaluations is by Ilana Garon.

John Kuhn: Why Shouldn’t Teachers Be Graded, Too? appeared in Anthony Cody’s blog two years ago, but it’s a good one.

Changing The Language From Anti-Testing To Pro-Whole Child is by Jose Vilson.

Getting Teacher Evaluation Right is from The Shanker Blog.

Look to other ‘knowledge industries’ to get teacher evaluation right is by Barnett Berry.

Exemplary Teacher Evaluation, Part 1 is by Grant Wiggins.

Are We Learning From Evaluations? is from Education Week.

Here’s a series of exceptional posts on assessment that Marc Tucker has been writing over at Education Week.

The Failure of Test-Based Accountability

Accountability and Motivation

I’m eagerly awaiting his next post, where he says he “will describe accountability systems for education consistent with the ideas of McGregor, Drucker and Pink—systems embraced by the countries with the best education records in the world.”

Here are excerpts from his first two posts:

If-we-want-broad

Policymakers-have-placed

Testing To, and Beyond, The Common Core is by Linda Darling-Hammond is another important new article on assessment. Though I’m not thrilled with her apparent position that test results from next generation of state tests should be included in teacher evaluation (see The Problem With Including Standardized Test Results As Part Of “Multiple Measures” For Teacher Evaluation), it’s an important article to read, nevertheless.

Accountability: What the Top Performers Do

One piece of the whole (article by Linda Darling-Hammond) comes via Stanford.

Lesson Observations Are No Way To Grade Teachers is from Forbes.

Jack Schneider has written a good piece titled The High Stakes of Teacher Evaluation.

What If Teacher Evaluation Isn’t Actually Broken After All? by Paul Bruno is a really excellent post.

This Is One Of The Best Pieces I’ve Read On Teacher Evaluation: “The Problem with Outcome-Oriented Evaluations”


Teacher Evaluation: What Do We Want to Measure?
is from Ed Week.

Correcting a Harmful Misuse of Students’ Test Scores is by W. James Popham, and appeared in Ed Week.

How many bad teachers are there? is from The Hechinger Report.

On Teacher Evaluation is an interesting piece by Robert Slavin.

Again, I look forward to your recommendations of resources to add to this list.

If you found this post useful, you might want to look at the 460 other “The Best…” lists and consider subscribing to this blog for free.