Oh, really? Because it sure as hell didn't sound like you were saying that back in 2010:Publishing teachers' ratings in the newspaper in the way The New York Times and other outlets have done recently is not a good use of performance data, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said in an interview yesterday."Do you need to publish every single teacher's rating in the paper? I don't think you do," he said. "There's not much of an upside there, and there's a tremendous downside for teachers. We're at a time where morale is at a record low. ... We need to be sort of strengthening teachers, and elevating and supporting them."So how does this square with Duncan's famous endorsement, in 2010, of the Los Angeles Times' controversial project to publish a database of teacher "value added" ratings?Duncan told me that while that project highlighted important data that at the time had been collected and unused by the district, its publication was "far from ideal."
"What I was reacting to in L.A. was this mind-boggling situation where teachers were denied access to this data. The only way they could get it was through the newspaper," he said. "There was clearly some level of dysfunction [in the district], that this was the only way they could get it." [emphasis mine]
Duncan's comments mark the first time the Obama administration has expressed support for a public airing of information about teacher performance — a move that is sure to fan the already fierce debate over how to better evaluate teachers.
Those were your words back before it was revealed that you never thought this through, Mr. Secretary: that publishing this data was all about "rewarding" "success." Do you think that's what the despicable NY Daily News and the NY Post have been doing? Did Rigoberto Ruelas receive his "reward" when the LA Times went after him? Is this sort of humiliation "rewarding" good teaching?
Words cannot express the rage I feel right now toward this uninformed, insouciant fool of a man. His indifference to the consequences of his words and actions defy belief. That he struts and preens on the national stage, joking around at celebrity basketball games, while casually destroying the teaching profession and the lives of individual teachers is a national disgrace.
Race To The Top is a cancer upon our national education system. Duncan's incoherence about its consequences has cheapened our national debate about education. Now he backtracks on his own words in way that puts Condoleezza Rice exclaiming "No one could have imagined..." to shame.
Arne Duncan needs to be fired immediately. Every day he remains in high office is an affront to every educator in America. I, for one, refuse to continue to be a sap for President Obama until he cuts this incompetent loose once and for all.