h/t John and Ken
Couldn’t wait to get home and hit this, but Ed Morrissey nailed it;
As someone who ran call centers for fifteen years, I can attest to the necessity of objective measures in analyzing performance and mission success. For tasks where direct and constant supervision is impossible, the development of performance metrics is critical to determine whether an organization accomplishes its tasks regularly and reliably, and which employees succeed or fail individually. This applies in education, perhaps especially, where teachers inevitably make the determination of success or failure with little or no supervision at all, and therefore their own success or failure, except for test programs that measure student achievement objectively rather than in an entirely subjective manner.
The Los Angeles Times apparently agrees. They began performing comparative analyses of student test results based on teacher assignments and discovered that the LA Unified School District has a significant number of teachers holding back student progress. For this, the teachers union has called for a boycott of the newspaper:
Wow, just wow. The United Teachers of Los Angeles (UTLA) President A. J. Duffy is upset the LA Times for once (or once again, depending on what you think of the Times) is refusing to publish the facts without the required leftist slant expected by unions.
Via the LA Times;
The Los Angeles teachers union president said Sunday he was organizing a “massive boycott” of The Times after the newspaper began publishing a series of articles that uses student test scores to estimate the effectiveness of district teachers.
“You’re leading people in a dangerous direction, making it seem like you can judge the quality of a teacher by … a test,” said A.J. Duffy, president of United Teachers Los Angeles, which has more than 40,000 members.
Article quote continues below-
What The Times found was that *gasp* teachers who performed better generally had students with higher test scores. I know, shocking, isn’t it?
Based on test score data covering seven years, The Times analyzed the effects of more than 6,000 elementary school teachers on their students’ learning. Among other things, it found huge disparities among teachers, some of whom work just down the hall from one another.
After a single year with teachers who ranked in the top 10% in effectiveness, students scored an average of 17 percentile points higher in English and 25 points higher in math than students whose teachers ranked in the bottom 10%. Students often backslid significantly in the classrooms of ineffective teachers, and thousands of students in the study had two or more ineffective teachers in a row.
Want to really mess with the unions in LA? Go to the LA Times article “Who’s teaching L.A.’s kids?”, read and Tweet it out. Obviously it’s something they don’t want to have spread around.
Oh, to A. J. Duffy;