The Wisconsin State Assembly has passed a bill that removes a ban on using student test results to evaluate teachers in order to be eligible for $4 billion in federal stimulus money.
The measure to remove the “firewall” on the test data also cleared the Senate last week, and now heads to Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle, who said he will sign it.
The votes came after President Barack Obama’s Nov. 3 visit to the state capitol to tout the Race to the Top grant program and urge states like Wisconsin to make bold reforms.
“If you’re willing to hold yourselves more accountable, if you develop a strong plan to improve the quality of education in your state, we’ll offer you a grant to help make that plan a reality,” Mr. Obama said in his speech at a Madison middle school.
Republicans argued the proposal was useless because teachers couldn’t be disciplined based on the scores and any evaluation process would have to be bargained with the union.
A version of this article appeared in the November 11, 2009 edition of Education Week as Wisconsin Lawmakers Remove ‘Data Firewall’