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Advancing the Teaching Profession

Barnett Berry

October 2, 2013

Principals overburdened for no good reason


Let’s start with a statistic: 75% of principals in the U.S. feel their jobs have become too complex.

Brent Staples wrote about principals’ “near impossible” work lives in a recent New York Times commentary piece on the rollout of Chicago’s teacher evaluation system. He reflects on a new analysis that reveals Chicago principals lack the training and time needed to be effective evaluators.

But that’s not all—Staples notes that principals “desperately need better training in how to help teachers improve,” a deficit that defeats the purpose of the evaluation system. 

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Barnett Berry

May 20, 2013

Evaluating the evaluators

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Debates continue to swirl over the use of student test scores—and any number of statistical models—to assess which teachers are effective or not. Fueled by the priorities of the U.S. Department of Education (including its Race to the Top and No Child Left Behind waiver rules), 40 states are now using some form of value-added (VA)1 or student growth (SG)2 models in their new teacher evaluation systems.

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