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LA Teachers Union Knocks Evaluation Plan

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 22 (UPI) — The Los Angeles Unified School District is trying a teacher evaluation program with parent feedback and peer review, but the teachers’ union says it opposes it.

The pilot program will feature parent and student feedback, students’ standardized test scores, and more detailed observations given by peers, The Christian Science Monitor reported last week.

School officials say the new plan being tested is in line with the Obama administration’s desire to use more systematic and data-driven approaches to evaluate teachers.

“This is actually a great initiative in Los Angeles because rather than adopting a policy on teacher evaluation, they are actually developing one,” said David Plank of Policy Analysis for California Education, an independent, nonpartisan research center.

However, union officials have expressed disappointment that the district has instituted the program without their input.

“They are plowing on without consulting with us first, which is very unfortunate,” Marla Eby, spokeswoman for United Teachers Los Angeles, said.

The union is complaining of insufficiently trained evaluators, a focus on individual teachers rather than on collaborative approaches and the use of computer programs for evaluation that still have bugs to be corrected.

“This should be about trying to improve teachers rather than evaluating and judging them,” Eby says. “Everyone agrees that the current system is no good, but they just unilaterally barreled forward on this without our input and paid people to participate. We are calling it a bribe.”

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  • s c

    Stop the presses! A group that probably knows something about bribery is complaining about someone else using the same technique. In the real world, that’s what we call . . . hypocrisy.
    Teacher unions are the last group that has any right to whiz and moan about teacher standards. They want the school district to focus on ‘collaborative methods” and NOT on individual teachers? So how many teachers does it take in LA to teach students properly?
    Sorry, NEA, but America is fresh out of sympathy for unions. Marx and Lenin would be proud of you, but that’s due to your ‘superiors’ who do their best to avoid talking about the real roots of labor unions. Unions in general (and teacher unions in partifular) are more trouble than they’re worth.
    Parents, solve the problem by homeschooling, private schools or private schools. Public schools (especially in population centers) should be aborted. Yes, we CAN get rid of teacher unions.

  • s c

    [sorry, make that . . . or church schools]

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