Thursday, April 03, 2008

Barack Obama on Teacher Preparation ?

A friend of mine mentioned that Linda Darling-Hammond of Stanford was serving as an educational advisor for Barack Obama.
I kept watch.

The New Republic posted this.

So, with interest, I re read his plan for education. Here is one interesting piece:

Prepare Teachers: Obama will require all schools of education to be accredited. He will also create a voluntary national performance assessment so we can be sure that every new educator is trained and ready to walk into the classroom and start teaching effectively. Obama will also create Teacher Residency Programs that will supply 30,000 exceptionally well-prepared recruits to high-need schools.

Teacher Performance Assessment in California:

SB 2042, in 2000, required a major revision of teacher preparation in California based upon a new set of state standards and a set of teacher performance expectations (TPEs). The universities have responded by revising their programs. In 2042 the legislature created a system where the state must continually train new teachers to replace those driven out by inadequate working conditions. One element of 2042 required the development of high stakes performance assessment of California teachers (TPA) based upon the teacher performance expectations (TPE) to be developed by the Commission on Teacher Credentialing.
The problems with this are several. There is no evidence that TPA’s are valid measures of good teaching. To the contrary, our experience tells us that one-time all-or-nothing tests like the TPA are among the poorest possible ways to predict the likelihood that a test-taker will be an excellent California teacher.

Thus the California legislature and CTC have imposed an expensive, redundant accountability system – one the state cannot afford in its current budget crisis. It would be a gross injustice to add funding for this performance assessment into the budget when our schools are having to increase class sizes, lay off teachers, reduce career technical education, cancel transportation, and delay long needed school reforms.

So, I wonder if this is the kind of performance assessment Barack Obama is in favor of?
Duane Campbell


No comments: