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MrsPhysics MrsPhysics is offline
 
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MrsPhysics
 
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Doesnít Seem Fair
Old 08-23-2019, 01:42 PM
 
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As soon as I typed the subject it made me think of my students complaining about nothing being fair, but Iím going to go ahead and complain anyway.

I teach in PA, and our students take PSSAs until 8th grade and Keystone Exams after completing Algebra 1, Biology, and Literature. Teacher evaluations are partially based on these scores. So part of your evaluation is based on how your particular students do on your exam, and another part is based on how your building does overall. (The entire faculty gets that second part regardless of subject, but only math, ELA, and science teachers get the first part.)

Today we were told that math, ELA, and science teachers would be mandated to use growth on PSSA/Keystone computerized benchmark testing as our SLO (which is yet another part of our evaluation) and are expected to show at least 20% growth for proficient and 30% for distinguished. Before, we were able to set a SLO to any course objective and demonstrate student mastery in lots of different ways.

I feel that this is very unfair to math/ELA/science teachers because now we have 3 pieces of our evaluation that are based on basically one measurement. Our students do not take these tests or their benchmarks seriously. Some students just kind of stink at standardized testing and others just couldnít care less. I have about 45 students whose attitudes will have a huge effect on my performance evaluation. Did I mention that only one of them passed last yearís math test and that the only repercussion that the students will see is that they will have to retake the test the next year until they pass?

Do you think this is grievable with the union? I am non-tenured and donít want to rock the boat, but maybe I could convince a coworker to grieve. It just doesnít seem fair to be forced into a specific SLO when all of the other teachers get to pick.


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Old 08-23-2019, 02:37 PM
 
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I know my old district went this route a few years ago -- forcing teachers to use a specific SLO based on a standardized test and then tying our pay increases to the test scores. No one grieved it, per se, but the union pushed back hard and eventually won. Maybe see if your union will act on behalf of everyone? We went to school board meetings and met with the supt. to get it changed. It helped that principals were against it, too, since they were being evaluated with the same test. No one was going to come out looking good.
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Old 08-23-2019, 07:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Maybe see if your union will act on behalf of everyone? We went to school board meetings and met with the supt. to get it changed.
This how things have gone in my district-we aren't evaluated with student test scores but we have had other issues and everyone came together-we showed up at board meeting in our union shirts, a few people spoke and everyone rallied. We held a "work to contract" policy and we showed them that we were united and wouldn't stand for it. In union their is strength, so it needs to be a team effort!

Last edited by Kinderkr4zy; 08-24-2019 at 11:15 AM..
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Old 08-24-2019, 04:13 AM
 
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We had this in N.J. Ela and math teachers from grades 4-12 would have the test scores used as 30% of their evaluation. It was awful. Many teachers requested lower grades because they didn’t want to deal with it. Our governor changed it to 5%. If it’s just your district, you can try to get the union involved.
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