Thursday, January 10, 2013

Steps toward teacher performance pay

The quest to identify and reward the most effective teachers marches on,  in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and nationally.

This week the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation released results of a three-year study of effective teaching,  which relied on volunteers from CMS and six other districts (read the report here).  Researchers set out to test the belief that teacher ratings based on student test scores can provide meaningful predictions about teachers' ability to help students learn.

The conclusion was yes  --  but that such  "value-added"  ratings should count for only one-third to one-half of the overall evaluation.  Classroom observations  (preferably done by more than one person)  and student surveys should account for the rest, according to the Measures of Effective Teaching study.

The researchers used test-score ratings to identify top teachers in 2009-10,  then randomly assigned students to participating teachers in 2010-11.  Sure enough,   teachers with higher ratings got better results with a different batch of students,  not just on the state exams used to calculate the ratings but on  "more cognitively challenging assessments."  The researchers discovered that they got the best predictions of success on the tougher exams when they added the other factors.

None of this will come as a surprise to the educators and policy-makers who are working on new evaluations in CMS and North Carolina.  The state is moving toward evaluations that include all of those measures,  and CMS is drafting a proposal to submit in the coming weeks.  The district has signed a $57,630 contract with the nonprofit Battelle for Kids to help design "a thoughtful and sustainable compensation program,"  says CMS Chief Operations Officer Millard House.

State lawmakers invited all districts to submit such plans,  House said.  Since November,  he said,  CMS has had 40 to 50 teachers and principals working on proposal.  At this point,  House said,  it's unclear whether those proposals will be simply be taken under advisement by state officials or might be approved as district pilots.

This is the third time in three years CMS has recruited teachers to offer advice on transforming evaluations and rewards.  Former Superintendent Peter Gorman had teacher panels advising him on pay for performance,  which met with significant resistance from faculty and families.  Interim Superintendent Hugh Hattabaugh rounded up more volunteers to work on what he dubbed the Talent Effectiveness Project,  which moved the focus away from pay  (in part because there was no money available).

Now Superintendent Heath Morrison has created a Compensation Task Force as one of 22 panels that will advise him in the next six months.  House said the employee volunteers who are already at work will be joined by community members.

For all the discussions,  research and renaming,  this remains a thorny topic.  I heard about Battelle's involvement from a teacher who got a copy of an online teacher survey the group just completed.  This teacher was wary of an Ohio-based group that seems to be pushing  "teacher effectiveness"  and  "strategic compensation,"  which struck her as the latest names for performance pay.

"The survey seems skewed to make a traditional step-and-level pay system seem unfair,"  the teacher emailed.  "I don't think that is true. I like the pay-scale system because it guarantees that you will make [x] amount of money whether you are having an awesome year teaching or not. As teachers we have good years and bad years. It would be nice to have some kind of bonus for years that you have an exceptional year. However those years can be due to so many independent variables. With 'strategic compensation' I don't think those variables are appreciated enough."

If you've got ideas about teacher compensation or any of the other topics that are being tackled by the CMS task forces,  the district has launched an online suggestion form to channel the ideas.


Anonymous said...


Supposedly there was a survey sent out to teachers last Friday about their preferences for a performance pay plan. The principals were supposed to send it to the staff. The data will be discussed today in that committee.

However, I know of only one teacher that got that survey.

I also know of many teachers who are in other jobs that are paid as a teacher but don't have principals as supervisors. None of them got that survey.

So how does this correctly represent the groups response?

Anonymous said...

Ann, You forgot to mention how long ago it was that Gorman announced CMS's move to pay-for-performance. What was it 6 years ago? I'd really like to know. The new compensation task force sounds like just another delay tactic.

Let's face it, the only way to reform the old pay-for-years-on-the-job system is to have the state mandate this be done. The BOE would never allow pay and tenure to be reformed otherwise. And Heath Morrison shows no sign of making any reforms that the BOE won't agree with.

If you want to know what happens on pfp, watch what the state legislature does. Locally it's going nowhere.

Anonymous said...

CMS cannot make any game changing pay changes unless the state is on board. This is all hot air until CMS leaders could think or possibly sell it the the state legislators. This will not happen anytime soon. It will also have a negative impact on childrens education as no "great teachers" will want to go into a challenged school. It would affect their pay so the best teachers will stay at higher performing schools.

Anonymous said...

I agree with 8:42. Challenged schools are very difficult to staff. They are high-stress places with low morale, terrible behavior, high turnover, high absenteeism, low parent involvement, etc. Those teachers who are decent are almost NEVER allowed to transfer out to a better school, regardless of how burned out they are. High poverty schools wear people down.

Who in their right mind would want to go there? Sure, more money and "performance pay" could be offered. It has been done before. Teachers identified as highly effective, by whatever means used, are lured to these schools (Union County did it) by promises of a high bonus conditional upon a three year committment and performance goals.

What happened after the three years were up? They left.

I am glad, however, to see that standardized test scores count up to 50% of a teacher's evaluation and are not the sole basis. There are just too many variables that affect test scores, as many others have already stated.

Anonymous said...

I am a former CMS teacher who has left for the private sector after teaching and being stuck in a high-poverty middle school. That idea of performance pay would never work at my school due to the awful environment there.

What have I experienced since I left CMS? Well, I do get paid for my performance but it is something that I have so much more control over. I get treated with respect and am not subjected to verbal abuse. People who aren't performing aren't coddled nor are excuses made for them. They shape up or ship out. I don't have to take the blame for the laziness and apathy of others. If any employee ever acted the way a lot of students at my school acted, they would be immediately fired and escorted out of the building by security. I actually spend my time doing WORK rather than waste time in meeting after pointless meeting talking about it. I get to leave the building for an hour and do as I please as long as I am back on time. I can go to the restroom whenever I like. I don't have things stolen from me like I did when I taught.

This doesn't mean that my private sector job is a magical fairytale place where everything is perfect. There are "adults" who are spoiled brats when they don't get their way. There is political nonsense. But, despite that I still made the right decision to get the hell of of not just teaching, but CMS.

Missouri said...

8:42 and 9:08, would as part of the 3 year committment to a "challenged" school with the bonus pay and all and if it included then your choice of a school to transfer to at the end of the 3 years, would the teachers had stayed in the teaching profession and in CMS?

Anonymous said...

I think that would definitely be a good incentive (this is 9:08 typing). Allowing them to transfer to a school with an opening that they would be qualified to fill is what the agreement should be.

You see, CMS makes it insanely difficult to transfer out of a high-poverty school. Teachers who are good but just want a BREAK from all of the challenges of teaching in a high-poverty school are all-too-frequently blocked from transfering. Don't get me wrong, an employer has the right to place its employees where needed but blocking transfer requests out of challenging schools is counter-productive.

How? Let's face it: people who seek a transfer are doing so because they don't want to remain there anymore - regardless of the reason. To keep them in place merely gives them the incentive to leave either for a surrounding district/private/charter school or leave the profession.

Let's say for example that a teacher is School A wants to transfer to School B, which has a vacancy. The teacher is prevented from transfering so the teacher accepts a job elsewhere. Now, instead of having one position to fill CMS has TWO. Instead of School A having to fill a vacancy caused by a transfer, BOTH schools A and B have to fill vacant positions.

What is the other result? CMS loses another effective teacher to another place and then has to spend money on training the new hire when they HAD someone good in the first place.

By doing this, CMS is a de-facto training ground for other school systems. CMS deals with rookie teachers with rookie teacher mistakes, the surrounding districts get a teacher who has learned from mistakes and CMS starts over.

Who pays the highest price for this? The children.

Ann Doss Helms said...

6:47, the survey you're talking about is the one by Battelle. I don't know how effectively it was distributed, but apparently it's supposed to go to everyone. From the introductory message: "This survey is very important as it is a way for the district to know exactly how teachers and administrators feel and what they want when it comes to compensation. This is an opportunity for every educator in our district to be a part of this process!"

It closed Tuesday, so if people weren't seeing it until Friday (or not at all) then I'm guessing they didn't get a full sample.

BolynMcClung said...


The Compensation Task Force. What questions will it be asking that will make CMS a better place?

Bolyn McClung

Missouri said...

11:23 (9:08), "and CMS starts over". I think you hit the nail on the head here. Most of us in private business sees this lunacy CMS thinks it can operate under. And it makes no sense at all from delivering effective customer service (i.e. successfully educating children) and efficiency of tax dollar expenditures.

As professional managers, educrats are horrible. Lastly too, CMS does not even have its mission statement right. It should focus more on the teachers would deliver CMS's services. It should turn its whole organization over so it is entirely focused on support of helping teachers succeed by the principals and other adminstrators. These leaders should really be servers. Instead, they view teachers as the failures to fix society's ills and as a dime a dozen, one leaves, they just go hire another warm body and they are back to even.

Ann Doss Helms said...

7:27 a.m., Gorman launched his big performance pay push in fall 2010, then resigned at the end of that school year. And I agree, the distinction/overlap between CMS and the state has been confusing. First CMS went out on its own, then it backed off to follow the state, now seems to be volunteering again to craft a pilot proposal.

Ann Doss Helms said...

Bolyn, according to Millard House, the teacher group now working IS the compensation task force, though apparently some community members will be added. But by the time they get on board, the employee members will pretty much have a plan crafted to send to the state.

Anonymous said...

12:51, this is 9:08 (Gosh, sounds like were playing spies or something lol). You are right too. CMS' biggest problem as well as liability is in its management. Often, the "leaders" are people who were either ineffective in the classroom, tired of being in the classroom, or both.

Michelle Rhee was right when she stated that too many schools are run for the benefit of adults, not the kids. Too many CMS administrators buy into the latest fads and trends that always promise to raise achievement but end up being costly boondoggles.

The latest is the mandate that students cannot receive a grade lower than a 50%, regardless of the quality or even quantity of work - in other words, even if they do nothing.

That is one of the reasons I am no longer teaching. From teaching to the test, seeing kids get promoted by a principal despite our recommendation that s/he be retained, grade fixing by the administration, and now this....I just can't be a part of a system that on one hand talks about high expectations while on the other hand lowers them.

At my company, it would be inconceivable that an employee could come to work late, out of dress code, do nothing, curse at and defy supervisors, and the worst consequence would be 50% pay. No, that person would be shown the door and rightfully so!

At my last school before I left, our principal defended the 50% grade minimum by asking us, "Are we here to help children or to fail them?" Would someone please explain to me how shielding children from failure is helping them? In my experience in life, failures are hidden blessings when we choose to learn from them.

What do we teach children by this new policy? This in effect undermines teachers since it exempts children from realistic consequences. How will this help our children, who will eventually reach adulthood, become responsible and resiliant? How will that nonsense make them competitive in the future, where the economy will become even more global and interconnected?

What CMS, and other school districts need to do is the opposite of what they are doing now. STOP listening to the so-called "experts" whose ideas cause far more harm than good. Instill real discipline and meaningful consequences. Focus more on the rights of the kids who are there to learn rather than the rights of those who couldn't care less. Get the NC General Assembly to pass a law shielding school employees from lawsuits unless an actual law was broken.

Societies rise, grow, and thrive due to discipline, values, hard work, morals, and sacrifice. Societies become great by having high standards in personal behavior. Societies decline when standards are relaxed.


Anonymous said...

I am a teacher that is part of the working group (don't worry, this is my lunch). The survey was for all teachers and the information/link was sent to principals to forward to their staff. To make sure more people had time to respond, the deadline was extended until Friday at 11:59pm. This was also communicated with all staff via an email that went out on Tuesday night. So, teachers - if you have not gotten the survey, ask your principal for the link. We need everyones feedback.

This article leaves out a large fact - this work is being done in response to the legislature and House Bill 950. We (districts across the state) were asked to provide ideas to the legislature on the type of pay system we think would be appropriate for teachers. Dr. Morrison then decided that he wanted teachers to come together to build a system for teachers. He also addressed this work in his 100 Day speech. States across the country are making schools change how they pay teachers - North Carolina being one. So we have been given the chance to provide input. Battelle was hired to help us learn about what people all over the country have done and facilitate our conversation (which we need because some staff sadly are not acting professionally during our sessions).

I have been part of the past compensation work at the district and this has been handled differently - Im very honored to be part of this work.

Jeff Wise said...

The School Finance 101 blog has an excellent review of the Gates study and its inherent flaws, see here:

I sincerely hope that the Gates report isn't just accepted on its face, but that CMS and state legislators review the report with a critical eye.

Missouri said...

1:26, ahhhh the giving everyone a trophy feel good artifical self esteem building falsehood. Then reality hits when they become adults, a failure hits them and they go off. For sensitivity, I'll not list a few recent examples. But reminds of the opinion article I read yesterday Seeing as how I can not read the Charlotte Observer for news anymore, I will move to some other free service.

Ann Doss Helms said...

Thanks, 2:18 -- that's good info!

Missouri said...

Thanks for the link Jeff. Of course CMS can not look past a buck if it has Gates' name on it. We all how the public education machine will prostitute itself for any dollar from the government or foundation even if it costs them, us the taxpayers, 2 dollars to implement the 1.

Missouri said...

Still CMS will have big challenges with this approach. First, teachers who are good eventually get assigned the absolute worse students and even a "road to Damascus" event will not help their outlook or achievement. Thus the model fails and the teacher gets a bad review. Second, as we have seen with inept students even given a 50 and worse, making level 2 of EOG is 40% or so, they still get graduated by principals so whether you have this inept principal or a sorority sista effect (new version of good ole boy network), a desired accolade could be overturned.

Anonymous said...

How many millions more will CMS spend on studies and surveys?

Pay me what the HELL you already owe me! (ABC Bonus Money)

Then return my dental and vision benefits!

Stop trying to figure out how to pay a first year teacher that has not had to suffer the indignities of the past 5 years the same pay as a teacher on step 5,10,15 or 20!

Does common sense ever come into play?

Anonymous said...

4:32 Now now now. Didn't you hear? Teach For America is the answer to all of our problems. Fill the building with TFAs and you get sunshine and lollipops.

Anonymous said...

Dear "Working Group" Teacher,

I am worried about the outcome given you can't even use proper grammatical structures in your appeal. Everyone's input (it's possessive--make friends with the apostrophe).

Here's my survey input: It's disgusting that CMS paid almost $60K to an outside consortium to deal with this and yet they don't have the money to pay curriculum writers for the system. It's disgusting that yet again, CMS isn't focused on what matters--the students in the classrooms. Given an overwhelming flood of evidence credited to studies done in Tennessee, Colorado, Houston, etc. pay for performance simply has NO benefits for the students themselves. It is disgusting that no one ever seems to really HEAR what people are saying about the potential impacts on morale, communication and teamwork amongst teachers, etc., but instead blindly plows into the void because this is the latest resume building fad in education. Given that Morrisson is a Broad graduate---are we surprised?

So..."working group" teacher...take that back to your "working group".

A Teacher who got the survey just today and because I didn't GET a lunch break today because I was tutoring students, didn't have time to complete it one such short notice.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

5:16/5:18, that is the big problem in CMS: the administrators take care of themselves first and foremost. Those who impact the students the least get the most resources. That's why principals, assistant principals, deans of students, academic facilitators, and even counselors get iPads while the classroom teachers - those who actually WORK WITH THE KIDS EACH DAY either beg or buy their own.

And yet, Mooresville can provide computers to each student. Rock Hill has issued iPads to teachers. Not CMS! Now, let's waste some more money on consultants, consortia, surveys, and other b.s.

Anonymous said...

RIGHT ON 5:45!

Those with the most in CMS have the least contact with the students every working day. Every licensed employee should have to teach at least one class. This would solve soooooooo many problems. Ask any administrator about year round schools and they cringe inside and a few will denounce it publicly. They dont have to deal with students and few parents is the reason.

Anonymous said...

6:02 The senior administrators in CMS know full well the problems that are going on: morale, turnover, administrator bullies, administrators violating the law, discipline, etc. The issue is that they don't care.

There are schools with revolving doors in terms of staff. They don't care. The people in central office make decisions and are unaffected by the consequences of their decisions. This is so typical of government.

It's like some bean counter in central office deciding that 2+2=5 and it is the classroom teacher who has to somehow make it work.

Anonymous said...

How about we base performance pay for administrators on teacher morale and turnover?

Anonymous said...

Good idea. Another million spent on research and survey and focus groups to come up with the answer we all know will happen.


Anonymous said...

Heath "Door to Door" Morrison

Over 100 days on the job. Impact on the over 40 students in my classroom?


His and Gormans bonus: Thousands
(weather they take it or not) and the perks (computer, phone, car) Thousands

Anonymous said...

7:02 How much of your own money do you spend in order to be able to do your job? Can you imagine UPS delivery drivers having to buy gas for the trucks in order to deliver packages because the company can't/won't?

Anonymous said...

I received the survey and was appalled at the poorly written, confusing, leading questions that contained grammatical errors and misspelled words that spell check doesn't catch. Hard to put much faith in a company that would put out such a poorly written survey. And we are paying $60,000 for this?

still here and never going back said...

Ann, we received an email and it was extended for a few days.


Anonymous said...

2:18 and 8:31,
I also took the poorly worded, confusingly constructed(no when you actually mean yes introduction to one question), and the obvious pay for performance slant. One question had the pfp solution for every choice. Battelle's website will be happy to sell much of the information that others have paid for as well. 214 ipads down the drain for another bogus vendor of data when 2:18 is working so hard on another soon to be circular file liner.

Jeff Wise said...

More commentary on the MET study.

This critique shows the MET researchers used strategic averaging to make their correlations look stronger than it most likely was.

Then everybody's favorite celebrity analytics guru, Nate Silver, had this to say: "There are certainly cases where applying objective measures badly is worse than not applying them at all, and education may well be one of those."

The reality is there is more proof invalidating VAM than there is supporting it. Yet, education reformers and legislators continue to try and pound this square peg into a round hole.

BolynMcClung said...

To the leaders at CMS.

I want Dr. Morrison’s administration to be a success, but Ann Helms’ note to me in her blog makes me wonder. I had stated in the blog that readers should remember there is another group looking at compensation: a task force. This was meant to be a positive reminder.

Ann later wrote in response.

“Bolyn, according to Millard House, the teacher group now working IS the compensation task force, though apparently some community members will be added. But by the time they get on board, the employee members will pretty much have a plan crafted to send to the state.“

Considering the big show at Blumenthal and all the tables in the lobby for sign-ups, don’t you think the public is due an explanation? If other task forces meet and find the bulk of the work has been done there will be great damage.

I can see how I could be on your side on this. The General Assembly isn’t going to wait for a citizen task force in Mecklenburg. The Gen. Assembly has made the committee assignments and is probably completing the agendas now. At least that’s what I learned in the last BOE Intergovernmental Committee meeting.

But that’s not the point. CMS asked for help. In my opinion it asked for help to build public support of the kind that will last for years.

Get my drift?

Bolyn McClung

Missouri said...

Boyln, son! This is all theatrics again like a couple of summers ago. It is just Heath paying homage to the urban leaders who got this school system in a mess. Of course that is all Broad is about. It is show. And it is appeasement of the urban crowd. And it is another "throw the teachers under the bus" exercise to help the Charlotte Observer editorial staff with their white guilt.

Get with the show Boyln, gee whiz! You took this seriously?

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness !!!!!

Just took the survey. I have never seen a more poorley worded and obviously skewed survey.

It would take a very astute responder to not fill in most answers the WRONG way. Many choices blatantly skewed toward the performance compensation.

How much are we paying for this again?

Anonymous said...

The honeymoon is officially over. Bolyn said so, the taxpayers have paid for an Ohio con job. I recommend George C. Scott in "The Flim-Flam Man" next time CMS asks for fence. If this is an example of data retrieval then rent "Brazil." "This is information retrieval not information dispersal."

Shamash said...


Excellent example of how to lie with statistics.

Stuff like that really pi$$e$ me off.

It's dishonesty in its most devious form, hiding behind something like statistics that they KNOW most people do not understand.

Thanks for posting that explanation.

In math jargon, I think this is referred to as the "average correlation" vs. "correlation of averages" (if I'm correct) and is something that most novices would certainly miss.

But they are entirely different things and can totally change a correlation from positive to negative and vice versa.

This is pure sneakiness.

In fact, this statistical fallacy has a name:

The Ecological Fallacy.

From a Wiki article on "ecological correlation":

Because a correlation describes the measured strength of a relationship, correlations at the group level can be MUCH HIGHER (my emphasis) than those at the individual level.

Thinking both are equal is an example of ecological fallacy.

And I agree with you that a statistical "expert" would know EXACTLY what they were doing and how it influences the result toward a HIGHER CORRELATION.

It's a keeper.

(And if my explanation is in error, please feel free to add or correct...)

Shamash said...

The Wiki article on Ecological fallacy has some nice examples of how this statistical fallacy can change results.

One example of how a NEGATIVE individual correlation turns into a POSITIVE correlation with an average:

"Assume that at the individual level, being Protestant impacts negatively one's tendency to commit suicide but the probability that one's neighbor commits suicide increases one's tendency to become Protestant.

Then, even if at the individual level there is negative correlation between suicidal tendencies and Protestantism, there can be a positive correlation at the aggregate level."

So, yeah, you need to watch those "statistics" carefully...

Especially when they're comparing "averages" as they often do to "simplify" their charts and graphs.

We all know that "averages" are easier to work with than raw data, so this seems "reasonable" to the layman, but it truly warps the correlations.

So there may be a little more than "simplifying" going on with their statistics if they know about this little fallacy.

Anonymous said...

This is all the more reason to get rid of CMS! It remains, despite so-called "budget cuts", to be a top-heavy bureaucratic nightmare. Let each school be run indepedently by its principal who is accountable to its own board of directors. The board is made up of parent/community volunteers who are elected. Then, if the principal is the usual career CMS incompetant loser, that person will be removed instead of central office reassigning that deadwood somewhere else.

If the state wants to eliminate career status for teachers and have them on a year-to-year basis, so too should the administrators.

Keep the existing attendance zones. Have the county take over the busses and then farm it out to a private company to provide bus service for the kids. Parents sign a contract outlining behavior expectations. If students are disruptive on the bus, they are gone. Have the General Assemby pass a law shielding the company, county, and school from the lawsuits from the parents of these heathens - a contract is a contract, sorry.

Let each school be run in its own way to meet its unique needs. Think about how much money would be saved by NOT HAVING ALL OF THOSE CENTRAL OFFICE BUREAUCRATS ON THE PAYROLL! We wouldn't need Heath Morrison, Ann Clark, and the zone superintendents. If they are so great, let them apply for principalships. Let the so-called "experts" in central office go back to the classroom (if they ever WERE in one in the first place) and show everyone how it is done.

The point I am trying to make is that this whole business of wasting taxpayer money on a skewed survey is proof that CMS is too big, has been too big, and is beyond reform. The people at the top have their own agenda. Sure, they have teachers design the plan but it STILL has to conform to their idea. Just like Henry Ford said, "Let them have any color they like as long as it is black."

The people at the top who make the decisions that affect the teachers in the classroom would fail miserably if THEY had to go back to teaching.

Anonymous said...

Let me just add one more thing: if central planning and bureaucratic micromanagement is so great and effective, the Soviet Union would not only still exist but it would have been an amazing success. How did THAT work out? By that reasoning, North Korea would be a leader and shining example.

Missouri said...

I believe it is a graduate level course or at least one taught as part of any superintendent's program, like Braod Academy, to learn how to twist and turn data into the story you want told. Thereby if you get your story out first, those that might challenge you might take a week or two to understand the situation themselves since they are not privy to these results coming out and therefore their speeches are mostly ingored by the press and the public.

Missouri said...

8:54, many states have taken a stab at that and have done right well. What they do is pass a law that at least 80% (or some number) of the public education funding including all local, state and federal money must be spent at the schoolhouse level. I beleive this legislature is just the vehicle to do that.

Anonymous said...

Missouri, not to be political but with having the GOP in charge of the state legislative and executive branches, they might be open to this.

If you lived here back in 2005, do you remember the DUMP CMS movement from the people in north Mecklenburg? They wanted to split away from CMS because they rightly felt that the school system under Dr. Pughsley was completely ignoring their needs.

The Charlotte Observer predictably came out with an editorial trying to pooh-pooh the idea and that breaking away was not the answer. You know, typical nonsense about community, staying and working together to solve our problems, blah blah blah. The Democrat General ASSembly shot it down.

I just hope that our new Governor and General Assembly are more open to the pleas of those who see CMS as a waste of money.

Shamash said...

Anon 5:16...

Don't be so rough on "working teacher".

Its probably just a typing error.

Just like the on you made.

I think we all make editing mistakes using this software.

And we can't go back and edit, either.

Shamash said...


So you think their tactic is to strike first with results from their slanted statistics and then let the critics twist in the winds of obscurity after the initial buzz dies down*?

Yeah, that would work.

Especially since discussions about the details (particularly in our mathophobic society) are seen as wonkish and boring.

Putting the "big lie" out there and repeating without responding to critics probably works best.

Missouri said...

9:22, I remember it well. CMS (and the CO) squashed that effort but did set up the Area offices in hoping to satisfy the lack of responsiveness CMS was accused of. Of course the issue was with policies and rarely at the school house level. But the CO did their usual charactrer assassination onthose folks and Rhonda had to learn how to tap dance around all of that.

Anonymous said...

If this last of many surveys is used by Heath Door to Door Morrison with our BOE, then I am only 100% sure of this:

Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics

Congrats on Heath lowering the drop out rate however. Way to go BROAD!

Anonymous said...


The scientific method includes the following: (4th grade stuff)

1. Asking a question (check)

2. Doing background research (check)

3. Constructing a hypothesis (check)

4. Testing your hypothesis by doing an experiment (pay-for-performance, forced busing, new math, open classrooms, whole language, strategic staffing, No Child Left Behind, etc..).

5. Analyzing your data to draw a conclusion (?)

For the past 40 years, it seems to me CMS has been in the business of performing lab rat experiments on students and teachers. Did I miss something or do we never seem to progress past Scientific Method #4 before concluding "expert" hypothesis were wrong?


The road to hell is paved with good (and expert) intentions.

Alicia Durand

Missouri said...

Alicia, most of these by these education reformers are PR stunts. Usually it is to appease some group. Predominantly it is so these sponsors can gain position PR for being all noble and such. I have accused many it is just their egos trying to get their "back slapped" on the church steps on Sunday mornings.