The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

Opinion

April 23, 2014

Viewpoint: Politicians creating instability in public schools

I will begin this correspondence by stating I have known hundreds of educators from across the state of Indiana. There are a couple of fibers that commonly run through the character of most of these great people, educators truly care about kids, and they do not fear a fair and equitable evaluation (Emphasis on fair and equitable evaluation).

With recent events in the media and in school board meetings following the release of data on our teacher evaluations from Indiana, I felt compelled to speak out and write on this interesting/controversial component of educating our great students in the Hoosier state. There are many individuals far from the profession of education with corporate/political agendas who created the frustration of “fairly and equitably” evaluating Indiana’s educators.

Those individuals created the current system in which the recent results show a huge percentage of Indiana educators as effective or highly effective. At the opposite end of the spectrum there were not enough “failing” educators in regard to the number of “failing” schools. (Remember the labeling of our schools as “failing” is controversial considering there was a scandalous situation in which a school’s grade was changed because it is run by a huge campaign donor). Back to the results, if one were to look at them from a non-political, non-agenda mind set, those results would reflect what we see from studying all other professions. In any professional field such as, doctor, lawyer, engineer, and teacher, the rational thought combined with the evidence shows there is a small percentage of “bad apples” while the biggest percentages of these professionals are considered good to great with some even being excellent/superior. Unfortunately politicians, with their corporate agendas, created our recent system of teacher evaluation and did not get the results they wanted.

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