Of all of the things to spend money on and be concerned about in EDUCATING our students, this is not one of them. I’m not faulting the school or the teacher. They’re only playing the game with which they are trapped in by the state.
“Highlights” from the article (emphasis mine):
Photographs of each teacher hang nearby. Next to them are the average test scores for each of their classes, color coded in green, blue and red marker for high, average and low. Picture a super-size spreadsheet.
Teachers also can get bonuses or pink slips based on how their students do.
“the data room” – is the new meeting place for teachers.
Really? You need a “data room” to keep teachers and students focused on goals? What goals? Passing a standardized test that has no actual bearing on success in life? That goal? Wow, our focus is sorely misplaced in Texas. Read the article. $6000 to “design the room.” Salary for someone to be the “improvement coordinator.”
And the goal is to pass a test.
A test that has no bearing on college success.
A test that does nothing to prepare our students for the real, working world.
A test that the state of Texas spends $100,000,000 (that’s 100 MILLION dollars) on each year to administer (not counting local costs) while woefully underfunding actual education and not funding enrollment growth (which grows so fast each year it’s like adding another Fort Worth ISD annually).
A test that steals 25% or our school calendar to administer (not counting prep and practice days).
A test that does nothing but prepare our kids to take more tests.
A test that kills the love of learning in students.
A test that kills the love of teaching in teachers.
A test that kills innovation.
A test that kills creativity.
This is not what I want for my children. This is not what I want for other children. This is not what I want for our staff.
At what point will the Texas Legislature realize that if they truly want to be “successful” like the world’s leader, Finland (read that link, it’s worth your time), they have to go the opposite direction. You know, the direction that includes critical thinking, problem solving, free exploration of a subject as opposed to rote memorization. The one that mandates equity among ALL students and schools. The one that focuses on building successful citizenry.
Yeah, that one. </rant>