I will protect your pensions. Nothing about your pension is going to change when I am governor. - Chris Christie, "An Open Letter to the Teachers of NJ" October, 2009

Monday, October 11, 2010

Your Failed Media

Dear lord:
We have supported the governor’s political goal of knocking the wind out of the deep-pockets NJEA. It is in step with a national agenda to improve education and question some of the assumptions that the NJEA holds dear, such as the benefit of tenure and the difficulty of holding teacher performance up to standard measure. A year ago in New Jersey, it would have been difficult to discuss these issues publicly, since anyone doing so would risk the union’s ire.
No one says you can't discuss this, but you have to base your discussion on FACTS.

The FACT is that every expert who has studied the use of high-stakes testing to make decisions about teacher performance has said "Don't do it!"

I'm getting really, really tired of putting up the same links over and over again. This is NOT in dispute. Read some real research, please.

So there was Schundler at the State House last week, answering a subpoena to testify on the matter. There were some headline-grabbing allegations regarding the governor’s alleged concerns that negotiating with the union would be perceived as capitulation. If true, they raise serious questions about the priorities of a leader whose bold proclamations of educational reform have yielded almost no actual changes in policy, law or practice. Look no further than last week’s wan, business-as-usual approval of just six new charter schools, to open next year. Hardly a game-changer.
Who says carter schools are so great to begin with!?!? Why does the Record buy into this premise automatically when we know it's not the case?
We support experimenting with merit pay — guided by best practices and current research. Doing that will probably require the support of the state Board of Education, if not the Legislature. Succeeding will definitely require the support of the state’s teaching force.
So why not use the best research on charters to inform decisions? Why not the best research on value-added modeling?


Newspapers have no no one but themselves to blame for their deaths.

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