Morning Sentinel Staff
Commissioner Stephen Bowen tells half the truth and only half the story.
Concerning the teacher evaluation bill just passed, Bowen said, "The research is clear that the effectiveness of teachers and education leaders is the most important school-based factor influencing student achievement and success."
Unfortunately for Maine students, what he forgot to add is that there is absolutely zero data that has not been disproven that shows any positive student achievement from teacher evaluations based on standardized test scores.
Sadly, the majority of the Legislature swallowed this fallacy.
Tying teacher effectiveness to student test results does not improve student outcomes.
If people actually are interested in taking the time to investigate this fallacy and the actual negative impact on students, I suggest they check out a New York Times book review written by the renowned educator Diane Ravich (www.nybooks.com/articles/ archives/2012/mar/08/schools-we-can-envy/).
There are many beneficial ways to evaluate teachers and administrators that could improve students learning, but tying the evaluation to test scores is not one of them.
I sincerely hope the statewide committee responsible for creating guidelines on teacher evaluations takes the data and research into account.
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