Teaming up with California Teacher of the Year Kelly Kovocic, Teacher blogger Anthony Cody has co-authored an opinion piece in the Sacramento Bee responding to the now-infamous Los Angeles Times series analyzing teachers’ effectiveness in connection with student test scores. Cody and Kovocic argue that efforts to evaluate teachers solely—or even mainly—on the basis of standardized test results are ultimately counter-productive:
But in the attempts to define teacher effectiveness, too many take the same well-trod shortcut taken by No Child Left Behind - the equation of educational quality with standardized test scores. This inevitably leads to the narrowing of the curriculum and teaching to the test, making such data a poor indicator of quality.
But there are, they contend, other ways:
The best evaluation systems encourage teachers to examine and reflect on what their students are learning, from a variety of angles. They include, but are not limited to, test scores. The vast majority of teachers want to do their best for their students. We need an evaluation system that encourages and inspires them to do so.
More from the indefatigable Cody here.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Teaching Now blog.