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Hillsborough teachers divided over education reform funded by the Gates foundation

In a random survey, fewer than 35 percent of Hillsborough teachers felt positive bout The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation experiment with how they are evaluated.

And does anybody care what teachers think?

A reader reported that the district conducted a Disneyworld survey, results showing great teacher satisfaction.

Reader Comment: I read the Danielson book and the vast majority of it resembles a revamp of the FPMS system that has been used in Florida for a long time. The main problem I see with the FPMS and Danielson systems is that they kitchensink all of the behaviors that Teachers use over a year or a career and require a Teacher to jump through specific hoops (activities) that may or may not be evident when the Teacher actually is teaching. The PEER EVALUATOR facet of the Gates Grant has merit, however, the application of it in Hillsborough county is wrought with error. The Teachers put in that position seem to be identified as exemplary Teachers and should be in front of children teaching them instead of making Teachers perform dog and pony routines. Perhaps this will improve with time. The 40% of the evaluation determined by "student performance" is at best statistically questionable.

Reader Comment: Before a peer evaluator walks in the room, a teacher has to understand what is on the rubric (what they're being graded on), then produce a lesson to try to fit in everything on the rubric in order to get a good review. This equates to a dog-and-pony show, not what goes on in the classroom daily.

Reader Comment: Hillsborough sold out, watch the schools crash and burn. The vast majority of teachers do the best with what they are given. Picking on them will earn a place in Hell for the persecutors. Go ahead bullies.

By Tom Marshall

TAMPA - Hillsborough teachers are sharply divided about the district's nationally watched experiment with the Gates Foundation to boost teacher performance and toughen up how they are evaluated and rewarded.

In a survey conducted last month, fewer than 35 percent of teachers thought the $100 million grant has had a positive impact on the district, had seen positive results firsthand or believed it will be a good thing for them or their school.

In fact, more than two-thirds of respondents didn't think it has had a positive effect or were simply unsure. The numbers provide a rare overview of teacher attitudes at the close of the first year of the seven-year effort funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. . . .
The St Petersburg Times does not allow full articles to be posted. For the rest of this one, go to the url below.

— Tom Marshall
St. Petersburg Times


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