The New Teacher Evaluations Won’t Work
CHANGE 101 or WHY THE NEW TEACHER EVALUATIONS WON’T WORK
There are a variety of theories about how change happens. Change is difficult, because the power of inertia is ever present and comfortable. As humans, most of us are hard wired to not be risk takers.
The first step in any change process are that there has to be widespread agreement that there is a problem that needs fixing. Then the people seeking to change the status quo have to assemble a team that has enough influence that others will work with/go along with any proposed changes. It’s also clear that leadership then has to concisely articulate and communicate the new vision so that it becomes understood and practiced throughout the organization.
The proposed new teacher evaluation system is bound to fail because there is no agreement about what problem needs fixing nor is there a team that has enough influence to have all the different players go along.
— there is no agreement about what problem needs fixing nor is there a team that has enough influence —
Everyone agrees that not every child is a successful student and there is widespread enough agreement that more students could be more successful, however that is defined. But there’s no agreement that teachers are the problem. Nor is there any agreement that current or future assessments are accurate measures of teacher effectiveness. Thus, whatever one’s position on these issues might be, there’s no earthly way the proposed system passed by the state legislature is ever going to be effectively implemented.
What’s predictable instead is a lot of resistance. (For more on resistance to change, from an educational leader’s point of view, check out this post from Dr. Rich Hawkins, from the College of St. Rose SBL Program)
— That resistance won’t go away until educators are persuaded of the merits of an evaluation system. —
We are already seeing that resistance in educator support of the opt out movement and in the ongoing grade inflation in teacher observation results. That resistance won’t go away until educators are persuaded of the merits of an evaluation system.
Persuaded, not forced.
The legislature, the board of regents and State Ed are trying to shove a new evaluation system down the throats of principals and teachers. It won’t work.
Jared Gellert is the Executive Director of CITE.
CITE is the Center for Integrated Training and Education . For over 25 years, CITE has and continues to train TEACHERS (Early Childhood, Literacy, Special Ed, Grad Courses, DASA); COUNSELORS (School, Mental Health Masters, Advanced Certificate); and ADMINISTRATORS (SBL, SDL, Public Admin, Online PhD) in all five boroughs of NYC, Yonkers, and Long Island.
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