Audrey Amrein-Beardsley on The New York Times’ Touching Tribute to William Sanders, Creator of VAM

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Diane Ravitch's blog

The New York Times published a tribute by Kevin Carey of the New America Foundationto William Sanders, “the little-known statistician who taught us to measure teachers.”

One hates to speak ill of the dead, but accuracy requires that we note that Sanders’ statistical model for “measuring” teachers was flawed, inaccurate, and damaged the lives of thousands of teachers based on Sanders’ obscure algorithms. Sanders was an agricultural statistician before he found a goldmine in education. Measuring teacher quality really is not akin to measuring cattle or crops. Every analysis of the influences on students’ test performance gives far more weight to family income and education than to the teachers who see her or him for an hour or five hours a day. Sanders tried to remove human judgment from the equation and ended up creating a profitable business that distorted teaching and learning into a struggle for higher test…

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A Letter to Non-Union Teachers in Wisconsin

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And where would child labor laws, workplace safety and many other safeguards be today if union members hadn’t fought for humane working conditions early in the  last century. If we don’t stick up for our rights, they will be taken away.

Young Teachers Collective

By: Hallie Schmeling

Dear Non-Union Teachers in Wisconsin,

Let me start by introducing myself. I’m Hallie, a 27-year old, fifth year teacher in South Milwaukee, WI. I am certified to teach math, special education, and alternative education.  I currently teach in a unique program that is dedicated to meeting the social/emotional needs of students who have been disengaged in school in order to make progress with academic goals.  My classroom experience allows me to utilize and continue to develop my professional training for students with intensive needs.  Like many of you, I love the work that I do, but I am also very concerned about the world of education outside of my classroom.

I began teaching in 2010 which, coincidentally, is when sh*t hit the fan for public workers/educators in Wisconsin. Our governor (like so many other politicians in the United States) was able to pass Act 10, a law that…

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New Hampshire: A Charter School with Superior Results

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More abuse of public money. Stop the hemorrhage now.

Diane Ravitch's blog

A post today describes how BASIS charter schools screen out low-performing students. This comment refers to a similar practice in Néw Hampshire. This is the exact opposite of what charters were supposed to do: the original intention, long forgotten, was to enroll the neediest students and to help public schools by finding new ways to help struggling students succeed:

“We have a charter school here in NH called the academy of science and design that does the same thing. They state on their website that if you are not in the gifted program at your public school and a participant in first robotics or destination imagination you will most likely not succeed at their school. They also ask you to take an entrance exam. If you don’t score an 80 or above, your parents must meet admin for counseling. If parents refuse counseling they must sign something saying they refused…

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A New Teacher’s Thoughts on Why You Should Go into Teaching

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Young Teachers Collective

by: Rose Pompey

If you’re reading this post you probably already know something about the state of education in the US today, and you probably have some idea of all the pressures and struggles teachers are facing now. I’m not here to dispute any of these problems; in fact, I face them every day. I teach at a large title one middle school in the Denver area, and even though I’ve only been teaching about a year and a half I’ve been through and witnessed most of the problems commonly discussed in education today. Despite all of the crazy stories, long days, and the sheer exhaustion of being a first year teacher, I am here to tell anyone who wants to hear it that teaching is still a profession worth going into.  Really, I mean it. Teaching is the best job I have ever had and I’ve had a lot…

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