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If you don’t ask questions, you will never have to be afraid of the truth.



This week we received our first training on Connecticut’s new teacher evaluation system, and specifically on the one that our town has decided upon that fits into what the state deems is acceptable.

45% of my evaluation will be tied to standardized test scores.
5% of my evaluation will be tied to the schools standardized test scores.
40% is based on two goals that I set.  One of the goals has to be standardized, so based on standardized tests from SBAC, or district standardized tests. So 20% of our personal goals are based on standardized test scores.

Let’s see…   45% + 5% + 20% = 70%

So 70% of my evaluation will be based on test scores.  Now keep in mind I used old math, and not new math, so I could be off.

Teachers account for about 15% of a student’s test scores (socioeconomic stuff and other factors make up the rest).

So out of the 70% of my evaluation that is based on test scores, I have control on approximately 10% of it (used no math, hope that is right).

The evaluation is based on the gates foundation study on effective teachers.  So gates started by funding the common core state scamdards, funded the groups and companies making the test and tools, funded the groups collecting and amassing the data, and now gates study is the basis for my evaluation.  Next year our units will be handed to us from the district, units based on the common core state scamdards. The district performance tasks will be based on those units.

So as of 2013-14, everything I teach, everything I plan for, all data that I collect, my personal goals for my evaluation, and all data that is collected on me, will be a direct consequence of funding from gates (no, I will not capitalize the “g”).

The common core twitter chats will continue.  Blog posts on “ten math resources to implement the ccss” will continue to be written.  Articles on what teachers can do to prepare for the ccss will continue to be read, saved, and sent out across the web.  We will be told by our leaders and fellow teachers that we can’t shed the standards, so make the most of it, and join committees and be a part planning the implementation rather than just complain about it.  We are told there is nothing to gain by bad mouthing it in front of the kids, that we should get them to take the tests seriously.  Teachers are being told to not question the process, just help implement it.

What lesson are you teaching the kids by not questioning the process?

What deep lesson are you teaching the kids by not questioning it with them?

200 years from now when the history of the implementation of the ccss is written, people will be unable to comprehend how our generation allowed so few people with no background or interest in education to take over our schools.

I stand corrected…200 years from now they just won’t care because their ancestors were taught from an early age to just not to question it. Everyone learned not to question it, because if you don’t ask questions, you will never have to be afraid of the truth.

No Risk, No Questions
“The duty of a patriot is to protect his country from the [federal] government.”  Thomas Paine
Who will protect our children from Duncan, Rhee, Obama, Pearson, and Gates?
If this process continues, the next generation will have no patriots.
Our history will not be written by patriots, but by the complacent Americans who were too afraid to question authority.

13 comments

  1. Thanks for the post Paul. I’ve been trying to spread the word myself, but no one seems interested. Very sad. If I had a child starting school now, I would certainly home school – another area being attacked as well. Keep us posted!

  2. Unfortunately, I don’t feel there are enough Patriots now! Never mind 200 years from now. My husband and I always tell my son to question what doesn’t appear to be right, especially in school! Indoctrination has been going on for years. They are just ramping it up now and a lot earlier in school! I am glad you are one, of I hope many, that will stand up and fight for the rights of students. I would hate to see what will happen next year in your classes. It saddens me, that they will not have the same experience my son had this year! Thank you Paul, for letting me get to know who my son spends a lot of time with, thru this blog. You are truly a blessing. Hopefully, my son will be inspired by you and always “Question Authority”!

  3. I find it interesting that Obama gave a speech blasting standardized tests and yet the policies he is creating shift evaluations toward using student “achievement” levels as the number one criteria. I find it interesting that he supports unions unless it’s the teachers union. I find it interesting that the standards themselves aren’t all that bad, but they will still be assessed using a multiple choice framework.

    1. Yep…many of the anti-CCSS sites I read are very conservative and blast the “progressives” on the left. Between Obama, my democratic governor, etc…seems as though both sides are hammering nails into the coffin.

      1. Yes. Completely bi-partisan issue. Once you realize that, it is so much easier to understand it is plain and simple – the corporate takeover of public education! Children and data are the final frontier of business!

  4. That is very sneaky to make part of your “practice goal” a standardized test indicator. The legislated statute says that 40% is related to your teaching practice and it is pretty clearly related to observation. Very sneaky! http://www.connecticutseed.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Adopted_PEAC_Guidelines_for_Teacher_Evaluation.pdf

    I don’t know if you have seen this but this video created in Tennessee by a fed up educator outlines a pretty grim overview of how this all happened.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0X0EFeH25bw&feature=youtu.be

    Education has been the key to freedom in the past – that is the only way we will be able to defeat this. And teachers and parents have to find a way to unite. New York State is a good example to pay attention to – data sharing with inBloom and parents finding out and revolting, ELA tests infuriating teachers and parents, the movement is beginning…I look forward to reading the rest of your blog entries.

  5. I teach at a charter school in CT. Here’s our teacher evaluation breakdown:
    40% Standardized tests
    30% Unannounced classroom observations
    15% Student and Parent surveys
    15% Peer/Principal/Dean surveys
    I teach minority students in a low SES district. Additionally, my students are academically tracked and I teach the lowest track class. Now wait for it…I don’t mind this evaluation system. I should be on the hook for teaching my kiddos! It’s my job. Our system is pretty fair, balanced, and transparent to staff. We’ve had input while implementing it and while it’s not perfect it’s still a work in progress. Our evaluation system has also allowed me to look at my teaching from many angles and make critical improvements to my practice. I hope that other CT teachers are willing to give new evaluation models a try and ask for school and district level input as these systems are rolled out. I’ll admit to being a bit nervous about this at first, but I’m steadily seeing the value, both for me as a professional and for my students.

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