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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Value-added analysis of teachers stirs debate



A recent study coming out of Harvard fueled the debate over whether student performance data over time truly can give insights into a teacher's value in the classroom. The researchers suggested that using value-added measures have promise, but aren't all that yet.

"Overall, our study shows that  great teachers create great value and that test score impacts are helpful in identifying such teachers," they write in their executive summary. "However, more work is needed to determine the best way to use VA for policy."

The NY Times used the paper as a jumping off point for a discussion among several experts asked to answer, "Can a few years' data reveal bad teachers?" Some of the answers:

"Teachers have always intuitively known that what we do has far-reaching impact. Performance measures should help us to do more and better." - Sydney Morris, Educators 4 Excellence

"Teachers need to be held accountable for 180 days of teaching, not for the one day students were tested." - Dawn Shirk, NC teacher

Read through the perspectives. Then feel free to share your own, knowing Florida is headed down this path as we speak.

[Last modified: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 6:43am]


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