Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

October 13, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

Wash. Post Article Wonders If Test Scores Might Not Accurately Evaluate Teachers — Ya’ Think?

one-teacher-might-be

Jesse Rothstein’s new paper questioning the infamous Chetty study (see a best list on that research here) received some thoughtful coverage today in The Washington Post.

As Rothstein’s analysis suggests, perhaps using test scores to evaluate teachers might not be a good idea….

You might also be interested in:

The Best Resources For Learning About The “Value-Added” Approach Towards Teacher Evaluation

The Best Resources For Learning About Effective Student & Teacher Assessments

And look for a series in my Education Week Teacher column later this month on this very topic!

June 13, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

This Week’s “Round-Up” Of Useful Posts & Articles on Education Policy

'UTLA Protest Against Principal' photo (c) 2014, Clotee Allochuku - license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Here are some recent important posts and articles on educational policy issues:

Of course, the big news this week was the awful Vergara decision. Here are some good pieces that have come out and that I’m adding to California Court Rules It’s All The Teachers’ Fault, which is where I’ve been collecting post-court-decision analyses. You can also find a lot of background info at The Best Resources On California Court Case Attacking Teacher’s Rights (I used the photo to illustrate this post because of LA Supt Deasy’s public support of the ruling):

AFT’s Weingarten smacks Arne Duncan about his praise for Vergara decision is from The Washington Post.
Tenure Is Not the Problem is by Richard Kahlenberg.

Taking On Teacher Tenure Backfires is by Jesse Rothstein and appeared in The New York Times.

Fuzzy Math: The guesstimate that struck down California’s teacher tenure laws. is from Slate.

“Strict scrutiny” of Vergara ruling a setback for California teachers is by David B. Cohen.

A silver lining in the Vergara decision? is from The Washington Post.

Why that ruling against teacher tenure won’t help your schoolchildren appeared in The LA Times.

Here’s a great video response from National Education Association President Dennis Van Roekel:

Here are posts on other policy topics:

Is Teacher Attrition Actually Increasing? is from The Shanker Blog.

Unions and the Concept of ‘Adult Interests’ is from Ed Week. I’m adding it to The Best Resources For Learning Why Teachers Unions Are Important.

The VA and VAM is by Gene Glass.

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.

I’m adding it to The Best Places To Learn What Impact A Teacher & Outside Factors Have On Student Achievement.

Gates Foundation urges delay in using tests for teacher evaluation
is from The Washington Post.

June 10, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
1 Comment

California Court Rules It’s All The Teachers’ Fault

'Tel Aviv - It's all your fault' photo (c) 2011, Yaffa Phillips - license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

In an awful ruling for teachers, students and their families, a California court “struck down teacher tenure and seniority protections embedded in California law.”

You can read a lot more about it at:

The Best Resources On California Court Case Attacking Teacher’s Rights

You might also be interested in I Am Tired Of “School Reformers” Using The Civil Rights Movement Legacy To Support Their Agenda

The Best Articles For Helping To Understand Both Why Teacher Tenure Is Important & The Reasons Behind Seniority-Based Layoffs

Here are some reactions:

This is the best analysis of the decision that I’ve seen so far:

And follow-up to that post:

And here’s another very intriguing analysis:

This is a good one, too:

 

 

 

 

And here’s a very interesting “quick reaction” to the verdict people will want to read.

Here’s an article from The NY Times.

Informed Student Advocates Pursue Reforms that, Unlike Vergara v. California, Actually Address Inequity is by Ben Spielberg.

Making it easier to fire teachers won’t get you better ones is by Jack Schneider.

Last Dance of the Lemons
is by EduShyster.

“Strict scrutiny” of Vergara ruling a setback for California teachers is by David B. Cohen.

Job Protections Do Not Hurt Students is by Brian Jones.

Will California’s Ruling Against Teacher Tenure Change Schools?
is by Dana Goldstein.

AFT’s Weingarten smacks Arne Duncan about his praise for Vergara decision is from The Washington Post.

Taking On Teacher Tenure Backfires is by Jesse Rothstein and appeared in The New York Times.

Fuzzy Math: The guesstimate that struck down California’s teacher tenure laws. is from Slate.

“Strict scrutiny” of Vergara ruling a setback for California teachers is by David B. Cohen.

A silver lining in the Vergara decision? is from The Washington Post.

Why that ruling against teacher tenure won’t help your schoolchildren appeared in The LA Times.

Tenure Is Not the Problem is by Richard Kahlenberg.

Here’s a great video response from National Education Association President Dennis Van Roekel:

The Vergara Decision is from K-12 Schools: Beyond the Rhetoric at Ed Week.

Aren’t California tenure policies in fact unreasonable? Plus 4 more Vergara questions asked and answered is from The Washington Post.

Vergara: The silver bullet that wasn’t is by Barnett Berry.

Even in Winning, Vergara Is Still a Loser is from Ed Week.

Is This The End of Teachers Unions is from Ebony.

Opinion: Blaming Tenure May Be Free But it’s a Cheap Shot is a very good piece in SchoolBook.

Gay Marriage and Vergara is by Rick Hess at Ed Week.

Grounding Vergara In The Realities of Teaching in California is from Ed Week.

For Vergara Ruling on Teachers, Big Questions Loom is also from Ed Week.

Guest Post: In Defense of “Last-In, First-Out” is from on labor.

May 19, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

The Best Commentaries On The 60th Anniversary Of Brown vs. Board Of Education

'Supreme Court decision' photo (c) 2006, Beatrice Murch - license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Boy oh boy, have there been a lot of commentaries published about the recent 60th anniversary of Brown vs. Board of Education.

I’ve been less than impressed by most.

Here are the ones I thought were particularly useful (note that I linked to some of them in a recent “round-up” of ed policy posts):

Five myths about Brown v. Board of Education is from The Washington Post.

Sixty Years After Brown V. Board, Black Teachers Are Disappearing—Again is by Melinda Anderson.

60 Years After Brown v. BOE, Mostly White Reformers Try To Fix ‘The Civil Rights Issue Of Our Generation’ is from The Huffington Post.

Sixty Years After Brown, Latino Students Are Most Segregated, Report Says is from Ed Week.

Sylvia Mendez and California’s School Desegregation Story is from Ed Week.

60 years later, desegregation of schools not done is from the Associated Press, as is Segregation gains ground 60 years after Brown.

How to help students of color, 60 years after historic Brown v. Board ruling appeared in The Washington Post.

Brown v. Board at 60: Why Have We Been So Disappointed? What Have We Learned? is by Richard Rothstein.

Six Decades After Brown v. Board is from Ed Week.

60 Years After Brown, Educators Demand More Focus on Public School Support is from U.S. News.

Brown at 60 (part 2) is by Renee Moore.

You might also be interested in two other previous posts:

A Collection Of Useful Posts, Articles & Videos On Race & Racism

I Am Tired Of “School Reformers” Using The Civil Rights Movement Legacy To Support Their Agenda

Let me know if I’m missing any articles on Brown that you liked…

May 18, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

This Week’s Best Posts & Articles On Education Policy Issues

'may 2011 10084' photo (c) 2011, Paul  Bailey - license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Here are a few relatively recent useful posts on educational policy issues:

60 years later, desegregation of schools not done is from the Associated Press, as is Segregation gains ground 60 years after Brown.

How to help students of color, 60 years after historic Brown v. Board ruling appeared in The Washington Post.

Brown v. Board at 60: Why Have We Been So Disappointed? What Have We Learned? is by Richard Rothstein.

Six Decades After Brown v. Board is from Ed Week.

60 Years After Brown, Educators Demand More Focus on Public School Support is from U.S. News.

The question of experience—teaching made simple? is by Barnett Berry. I’m adding it to The Best Articles For Helping To Understand Both Why Teacher Tenure Is Important & The Reasons Behind Seniority-Based Layoffs.

Report highlights impact of more time for teacher collaboration is from Ed Source. I’m adding it to The Best Posts & Articles About The Importance Of Teacher (& Student) Working Conditions.

How the Democrats alienated teachers’ unions is from Vox.

I’m adding this tweet to The Best Resources Showing Why We Need To Be “Data-Informed” & Not “Data-Driven”:

 

What Is Silicon Valley Culture & Why Would We Want it Anywhere Near Education is by Audrey Watters.

March 2, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

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

'may 2011 10107' photo (c) 2011, Paul  Bailey - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Here are some recent useful posts and articles on education policy issues:

Class size matters a lot, research shows is from The Washington Post. I’m adding it to The Best Resources For Learning About How Class Size Does Matter.

Why most professional development for teachers is useless is an excellent piece by Valerie Strauss at The Washington Post. It’s a follow-up to my previous post, Video: Though It Seems Like A Parody, It’s A Real Professional Development Event. Her follow-up piece is so good that I suspect it might end up on my year-end “Best” lists of education policy posts.

Marketing Technologies in U.S. Public Schools is by Larry Cuban.

So You Want to Be a Teacherpreneur? is from Education Week Teacher. I’m adding it to The Best Resources On Being A Teacherpreneur.

The False Markets of Market Based Reforms is by Bruce Baker. I’m adding it to The Best Posts & Articles Analyzing Charter Schools.

Chicago charter schools expel many more kids than district schools — new data is from The Washington Post. I’m adding it to the same list.

The Tragedy behind Noble Street Charters – a Skimmed Lottery is from the Classroom Sooth. I’m adding it to the same list.

Why preschool critics are wrong appeared in The Washington Post. I’ve got to create a pre-K “Best” list.

‘No Child’ waiver creates rift among Fresno education leaders is from The Fresno Bee. I’m adding it to The Best Posts & Articles On The NCLB Waiver Given To Eight California School Districts (Including Ours).

California: A K-12 Education Outlier is from Education Week.

Teachers at second school to refuse to give ISATs, CTU says
is about an effort that appears to be gaining steam in Chicago. You might also be interested in A Beginning List Of The Best Resources On The Seattle Standardized Test Boycott.

David Welch: The Man Behind Vergara v. California is from Capital and Main. I’m adding it to The Best Resources On California Court Case Attacking Teacher’s Rights.

Analysis: Legal positions in Vergara trial a universe apart is from LA School Report. I’m adding it to the same list.

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.

I’m adding them both to The Best Posts & Articles Raising Concerns About Teach For America.

What Richard Rothstein Told NAGB About the History of NAEP is from Diane Ravitch. I’m adding it to The Best Posts Interpreting This Year’s NAEP Scores.

The 12 Things You Should Never, Ever Say To Teachers is from Upworthy.

11 Annoying Things People Say About Teaching is from BuzzFeed.

December 14, 2013
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

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

'Fund our Schools - March4 Day of Action' photo (c) 2010, Dave - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

Here are some recent useful posts and articles on educational policy issues:

The Teacher Gap: More Students and Fewer Teachers is from the Economic Policy Institute.

The Meaning of PISA is by Marc Tucker at Ed Week. I’m adding it to The Best Posts & Articles On 2012 PISA Test Results.

Attention OECD-PISA: Your Silence on China is Wrong is by Tom Loveless. I’m adding it to the same list.

“PISA Day”—An Ideological and Hyperventilated Exercise is by Richard Rothstein. I’m adding it to the same list.

After Setbacks, Online Courses Are Rethought is from The New York Times. I’m adding it to The Best Posts & Articles On MOOC’s.

December 3, 2013
by Larry Ferlazzo
1 Comment

The Best Posts & Articles On 2012 PISA Test Results

'Pisa2008_Pisa tower' photo (c) 2008, Wit Suphamungmee - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Sorry, I couldn’t resist adding this photo

 

The Internet is awash with articles about this morning’s release of the 2012 Program for International Student Assessment, or PISA, test results.

I’m just quickly posting the best resources I’ve seen this morning (the last portion of this post has newly added important commentaries), and articles offering real insightful commentary will be coming later. However, I’ve included a few pieces that came out prior to this morning and, of course, you can also check out The Best Sites For Getting Some Perspective On International Test Comparison Demagoguery.

Here are choices, and please suggest more in the comments:

How public opinion about new PISA test scores is being manipulated is by Richard Rothstein.

Reading the PISA Tea Leaves: Who Is Responsible for Finland’s Decline and the Asian Magic is by Yong Zhao.

Randi On PISA: Time to End Failed Policies of NCLB & RTTT is from Diane Ravitch’s blog.

Key PISA test results for U.S. students is from The Washington Post.

Are Finland’s vaunted schools slipping? is by Pasi Sahlberg.

Tom Loveless: Why Shanghai Leads the World on International Tests Like PISA is from Diane Ravitch’s blog.

U.S. students lag around average on international science, math and reading test is from The Washington Post.

OECD education report: Lessons for the UK from other nations is an exhaustive series of articles from The Telegraph.

American 15-Year-Olds Lag, Mainly in Math, on International Standardized Tests is from The New York Times.

Take-away Pisa for busy people is from The BBC.

Are you Smarter Than a 15-Year-Old? is from Smithsonian Magazine.

Here are a number of resources from OECD, which administers the test:

PISA 2012 Results: What Makes Schools Successful? ReSouRceS, PolIcIeS And PRActIceS

PISA 2012 Results in Focus: What 15-year-olds know and what they can do with what they know

PISA 2012 Results: Ready to Learn: Students’ Engagement, Drive and Self-Beliefs (Volume III)

PISA 2012 Results

NASSP Statement on PISA Results: Despite Fervor Over Scores, US Continues to Ignore Lessons

My View of the PISA Scores is by Diane Ravitch.

The PISA Puzzle is by Dana Goldstein. Here are a couple of excerpts from her Slate piece:

There’s another PISA result that should be heeded just as much as, if not more than, the rankings themselves: The OECD found that school systems with greater teacher leadership opportunities, like Canada’s, outperform those like ours, in which administrators and policymakers exert more top-down control over the classroom, through scripted lessons or teacher evaluation systems that heavily weigh student test scores. Yet you won’t hear about that much on PISA Day, because those have both become popular interventions during the Obama era of education reform…..

Maybe the takeaway from PISA shouldn’t be that Common Core is the answer, but rather that we need a comprehensive approach to educating and caring for our poorest children in order to close the achievement gap between rich and poor in this country, and between American students and their developed-nation peers.

 

Four lessons on new PISA scores — Ravitch is from The Washington Post.

So…what can we DO about those low PISA scores? is by Barnett Berry.

Could Changes in School Culture Make U.S. Schools More Competitive? is from Ed Week.

10 things teachers need to know about the Pisa results is from The Guardian.

7 Reasons I Don’t Care About the PISA Results is by Rick Hess at Education Week.

Quote Of The Day: “Our Kids — Coddled or Confident?”

Want to Look Great on Global Education Surveys? Test Only the Top Students is from Business Week.

The Meaning of PISA is by Marc Tucker at Ed Week.

“PISA Day”—An Ideological and Hyperventilated Exercise is by Richard Rothstein.

Attention OECD-PISA: Your Silence on China is Wrong is by Tom Loveless.

The New York Times Editorializes on Teachers and PISA, with Multiple Errors is from Diane Ravitch.

A PISA contradiction is by Valerie Strauss at The Washington Post.

Why Arne Duncan’s PISA Comments Miss the Mark is from Education Week.

The Global Search for Education: The World Test? is from The Huffington Post.

Beware Chinese data: Its schools might not be so great is by Jay Mathews at The Washington Post.

How Does PISA Put the World at Risk (Part 1): Romanticizing Misery is by Yong Zhao.

David Berliner on PISA and Poverty is from Diane Ravitch’s blog.

How Does PISA Put the World at Risk (Part 5): Racing to the Past is by Yong Zhao.

Academics call for pause in PISA tests is from The Washington Post.

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