Sep 2, 2008

What Every DC Teacher Needs to Consider....

I contend that true democracy hinges on the fact that we all need to be as well informed as possible about the actions/intentions of decision makers that may effect us. Many would argue that our mainstream print media in Washington, DC purposely does not report or often under reports the other side of the story for political reasons (which I won't go into here). Therefore, the search for balance and equity in the news we need to know about is on the DL (down-low) . My goal here is to provide a look/see into the other side of the story about issues that impact our lives and often do not get equal coverage. I found the following essay by Barnett Berry, President of Center for Teaching Quality in the Washington Post comments on line section on September 1st. I think that Berry's piece is eye opening and represents food for thought as we continue to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of the Rhee/Parker teacher contract proposal ( yet unfinished). Posted by Candi.

Trading Tenure for Test-Based Performance Pay: Revolution or Just More Confusion ?

"The Washington Post reported last week that D.C. Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee has proposed what some are calling a 'revolutionary' contract where mid-level teachers (who currently earn approximately $62,000 annually) could earn more than $100,000 if they 'boost' student test scores while giving up seniority and tenure rights. No doubt schools need to pay more for valued student outcomes. But will this effort to link teacher pay directly to student test scores lead to even more confusion?Ms. Rhee claims the increased pay will be funded by philanthropy, but should a pay system be based on the idiosyncratic and often ever-shifting priorities of education foundations? How will student test scores be used? Will they use one year of data or more? Will teachers who teach non-tested grades and subjects be eligible? Will the chancellor make sure the tests that are used are properly scaled so more true gains can be determined? (Or better yet can the tests be scaled at all?) Even proponents of student test-based accountability for teachers claim that the current psychometric properties of value-added methods render Rhee's pay proposals unfeasible and perhaps even invalid. More importantly, while paying teachers more and differently is critical for our 21st century schools, is placing more emphasis on current standardized tests in the best interest of students? Should the pay plan focus on more robust outcome measures reflecting the demands of our global economy and new Millennium citizenry? No doubt we need professional compensation systems that reward teachers for improving student learning, developing and using new skills, spreading their expertise, and teaching in high needs schools and subjects as well as working hard to make a difference in the lives (not just test scores) of students. These issues were buzzed about this weekend as members of our Teacher Leaders Network Forum discussed Ms. Rhee's proposal. They have some better ideas that embrace much needed changes in tenure and seniority moving well beyond the focus on test scores that has beset more meaningful learning for all students' and truly revolutionizes the profession that makes all others possible."

Barnett Berry President, Center for Teaching Quality

4 comments:

mommilan&jr said...

Let's stop posting negativty Ms. Peterson and wait until the powers that be make a decision...thanks!

P.S. I am stll waiitng on answers from my other posts, thanks.

Candi Peterson said...

Presenting others views points contrary to yours is not negativity. Considering its my blog- I think that I have the right to post anything that I desire as long as it follows ethical blogging rules which I try to abide by. Despite what I view as a negative comment from you - thanks for checking me out. :)

Dorsey said...

mommilan&jr what is so negative about what Ms. Peterson posted? She is only posting a different perspective from dc teacher chic.

Anonymous said...

Hooray for American democracy !Just loved reading this article !"We are one people and our time for change has come !" Academic unionson and democratic spirit notes more than 18 million cracks are there ! We have a free electoral system that needs a few revisions but it's still a pretty good representive body for democracy.We may have to take measues to balance representative power with independent judiciary but individual liberties need to be respected.Rich or poor,black,white and all nationalities, this is the United States of America and we are a blessed nation of democracy !We the people have each other and it's time to unite and work together."The answer to the problem is not about one idea or one individual,it's about all of us coming together to solve the problem."Pickins! No time for ego tripping and power struggling with discrimination retaliation. We need administrative remedy with this crisis contract !We can call it draconian and sweep right under the rug ?Just spare us the drama of imposed cause of action because we are all to busy with a call to action redefinig the future for the next generation with resources in American Public School buildings.We're all exhauted with the impasse proceedures.This contract makes no good common sense for the fair proceedual interests of school teachers and it's caused an avalanche of to many head aches.We'll stick with the 14th Amendment and due process !Go get that third party impact bargaining arbitrator and it's a crisis !Need a prayer of judgement on that NCLB and 10 % !Fair tribunal for hearing and kick that appearance of impropriety & stipend out the door.Need to support Constitutional Basis Article 1 Section 6.Rhee's buildings are out of compliance and so is her administration.Think she's about fired and hired as many as she's going get, until she's the last one on this reform ship.Everybody else saw the iceberg and jumped off and waiting in rafts with an SOS."NCLB has done more to stigmatize and demoralize our students and the teachers in struggling schools than it has to marshal the talent and determination with resources to turn them around."Obama,11/20/07How much seriously has the school system spent on law suits ? Gotta find distribution of democratic decision-making authority between all the levels in educational management and they need to team up to get the job done.Use to be a clown for Ringling Brother's but got tired of traveling.Got big ears to the ground like Jumbo and from what I hear, this contract has got to go !We rode those donkey's in and they crossed the democratic finish line.Where is the School Modernization Act from 2005 ? Bill 16-250? Where are the exact numbers of expenditures on funding distribution ?Didn't find it on E-Bay.Tax payers need to see how much money and where it's being spent and why to the dime on line.No democratic self-governance in DC ? You've got to be kidding me !Andrew Jackson and a Modern Baalim and his Ass just marched kicking in !"Let the Teachers Rule At School !" "It's A New Day" Sting !Set Sail For Public Schools !Seriously,teaching is a wonderful profession with many challenges and especially with that NCLB and 10%. It is essential that all educators receive support and the resources needed to operationally run their business free from political or arbitrary interference.We've had it with the bad press and fund our public educational school buildings.NCLB has torn us down almost level with the ground and bring it on vouches and private but show fair balance of interests.We respect free choice but love fun competition.United States Teacher Rally in DC !The liberty school bells rang and we shouted hooray and caught a train to say,"believe we will inspite of tough times anyway and straighten out that crazy contract today!" Politically correct enough for ya ? Ha !Yeah right! Never mind, I'll go find Saturday Night Live and figure out a way to put that contract on and the 14th Amendment is alive ! Keep your sense of humor and if you want a clown ,go hire one at Ringling Brothers.Defending Champions of Public , for democracy and that part we're not kidding about !It's a week-end and my brain quit thinkin but real sure democracy is in !