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SoDone SoDone is offline
 
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Cheating the system?
Old 02-21-2020, 04:42 AM
 
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Current district gives out student perception surveys twice a year. We are required to have at least 20 students complete them by computer and they are a part of our overall scores.
What do teachers here do?
Choose the 20 they know will be favorable. I mean, of course they do. Who wants their scores affected by little Suzy and Johnny who hate you because they hate Math? I don't get how any district could take these surveys seriously. I can see value in student opinion but taken with a grain of salt and not used for professional scoring.
I've honestly never cheated the system but I fear I'm about to like all the others in my building.


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Old 02-21-2020, 05:01 AM
 
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I think student surveys have their value, but I don't think they should be part of an evaluation at all. Maybe not even seen by admin. Like you said, some students perceptions are warped, and they're not as able as adults (though some adults still aren't) to discern preferences vs. actual deficiencies.


For example, once I had some students (K or 1st, I can't remember which) list that they did not feel safe at school. I knew who had indicated that (paper-pencil and even though they don't have to write their names, many do out of habit), and I asked them why. They said it was because the fire alarm for fire drills scared them. That totally makes sense, but for someone to just look at that paper as a stand alone, it could look like my classroom doesn't feel like a safe environment.
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Old 02-21-2020, 05:23 AM
 
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Honestly, I think it's absurd to have students fill out surveys that can affect a teacher's evaluation. No wonder kids are so entitled and feel that they run the show: they do.

Even if they don't fill out surveys, they still run the show. Student complains to parent, parent runs to wimpy administrator, wimpy administrator blames teacher and what's the result? Students have teachers on the run.

And it's worse if you teach an elective subject at the secondary level because, if you don't let students run the show, you don't have students. They'll choose the elective where the teacher buys participation by inflating grades and not enforcing rules.

Of course teachers cheat the system. Why wouldn't they when the system is so absurdly skewed against them?
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Old 02-21-2020, 08:10 AM
 
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Quote:
they're not as able as adults (though some adults still aren't) to discern preferences vs. actual deficiencies.
Yes! They often complete surveys basing their answers on preferences, not deficiencies. That is so well-said. But they are children. They often aren't ready to evaluate, which is why these surveys may not be the best idea.
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Old 02-21-2020, 10:18 AM
 
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I would absolutely choose the 20 kids I expect to give a good response. It's a crazy plan which could easily harm the career of good teachers through no fault of their own. I would feel no guilt about gaming that system!


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Old 02-21-2020, 12:39 PM
 
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Lovely.
Another way education is becoming a sort of customer service idea.
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Old 02-21-2020, 01:15 PM
 
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Survey results should always be taken with a huge helping of of salt, not just a grain. To start with, questions are often poorly written or perhaps masterfully written to elicit the desired response. Then they require the respondent to choose an answer without explanation. Think of your example about the child who was scared by the fire drill.

We teachers had to do a survey about school climate. Things such as safety, leadership, parental involvement, etc. The most significant problem was that I was teaching in an alternative program housed in a separate building with our own administrator, but the survey results were being attributed to the district high school.

Choosing which students to survey invalidates the results, but if the district doesn't have enough wisdom to at least try to get a true random sample or to survey all students, choosing carefully which ones to include (or exclude) is permitted.
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Surveys
Old 02-21-2020, 02:31 PM
 
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Just for fun, I used to ask my freshman HS students to list the qualities of a good teacher. Their quick responses were always along the lines of "doesn't give homework, lets students come late, allows cell phone use in class whenever, allows snacks in class, only gives easy tests," and similar. I would just laugh and say I was not a "good" teacher. But thank goodness I wasn't being judged by their replies!
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Old 02-21-2020, 04:38 PM
 
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That's absurd. And if I were in that position, you can bet I'd choose the students who I know would rate me favorably as well.

In college I was a summer camp counselor and they had the kids do surveys. Over ten years later, this moment has stuck with me. I had handed them out after breakfast and was collecting them whilst making the girls clean up the cabin. I instructed one of the girls to go back and make her bed (we had "cabin inspections" and we'd hear about it if the cabin looked messy). A couple of minutes later she asked for her survey she'd already turned in. I was distracted/not thinking and I handed it back to her. She crossed out her favorable rating and rated me lower because she was mad that I made her make her bed .
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Old 02-21-2020, 07:54 PM
 
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Had a kid last week do his survey and told me straight up, ""Jut wait til they see what I say about you." And not in a nice way.

All of our surveys go to the district. I WISH I could pick out just 20. They supposedly don't count toward evaluations, but they do have names and identifying information on them.


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Old 02-22-2020, 04:31 AM
 
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Isn't it ironic that those who would question the character of students for cheating on a test or a project will cheat the system when it comes to them?
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Itís not cheating
Old 02-22-2020, 01:24 PM
 
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You are working within the parameters you are given. Now, if you filled out the surveys yourself or the same student filled out the surveys that would be cheating. They want at least 20 surveys from the students ó thatís what you are giving them. I would say thatís a smart move on the teachers.

It is ridiculous that this is considered part of your evaluation.
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Old 02-22-2020, 03:32 PM
 
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I think if you gave a kid a 30 question quiz and told him to do 20 questions, heíd pick the 20 he knew. Thatís not cheating.
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Old 02-23-2020, 02:13 PM
 
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Giving students at the middle to high school age surveys rating teachers or curriculum is just silly. That is something that is better suited for college level students. I would hand pick 20 as well because some are just more ready to understand the purpose of the surveys and try to be objective.
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