Teaching & Learning Update

Teachers Get a Crack at Responding to Ratings

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A controversial teacher-rating Web site has added a “rebuttals feature” to allow teachers to respond to criticism or compliments they may receive.

The 4-year-old RateMyTeachers.com has sparked criticism for allowing students to write anonymous comments about their teachers for anyone with Internet access to see. ("How's Your Teacher? Rate Her Online," Sept. 17, 2003.)

So far, the site has spurred a significant volume of interaction between students and teachers, and teachers have been enthusiastic about the new response feature, according to the media company that runs RateMyTeachers.

“Since the beginning of the site, teachers have asked for the opportunity to respond to their ratings,” co-founder Michael Hussey said in a statement. “We always encouraged teachers to respond in the classroom, but now, teachers can use RateMyTeachers to further engage students in a safe discussion over the quality of their teaching.”

Teachers can also flag ratings they feel have erroneously slipped past the site’s student reviewers, who remove postings deemed libelous, malicious, or vulgar.

The site now has more than 8 million ratings on about 1 million teachers in more than 47,000 schools across the country, according to Mr. Hussey.

Vol. 25, Issue 12, Page 12

Published in Print: November 16, 2005, as Teachers Get a Crack at Responding to Ratings

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