Norby Pushes Schools to Adopt Teacher Scorecards

The LA Times has published it’s entire database of what it calls “Value Added” teacher ratings, scoring LAUSD teachers with a method that tracks individual students’ advancement as they pass through classrooms over the years.

Example of a teacher's rating

In support of this idea, State Assemblyman Chris Norby just sent the following letter to current school board members and to this year’s candidates. In the letter, Norby asks them to figure out how to publish similar rankings for Fullerton teachers and schools.

Click to read Norby’s letter

The LA Times’ controversial scoring method is supposed to reflect a teacher’s effectiveness at raising standardized test scores using seven years of student testing data. While the Times admits that the scores do not rate every aspect of a teacher’s effectiveness, they do “bear on the performance of public employees who provide and important service.”

In defense against the teachers’ union outcry over the release of this data, the Times asserts that parents and the rest of the public have a right to view all of this data for the benefit of children.

We’re anxious to find out how the candidates respond to Norby’s request. This information would be extremely beneficial for Fullerton parents.

17 Replies to “Norby Pushes Schools to Adopt Teacher Scorecards”

  1. Dumbed down Fullerton, dumbed down America. Standardized test scores are not the way to measure a student’s achievement. No Child Left Behind with its emphasis on testing is leaving every child behind.. And teachers are being blamed.

    Come to TEDxFullerton to hear John Eger, speak to STEAM not STEM, the Arts are not a Frill!. And, listen to Sir Ken Robinson’s two TED Talks on, about how our schools destory creativity, innovation, handicapping our children’s futures and how we need a learning revolution…

    No change in the system which emphasizes rote over critical thinking skills, test scores over creativity, math/science but no arts, equals 21st century failure, personal and professional.

    1. Art is dead. Don’t believe it? Just take a tour of Fullerton’s embarrassing “Art Walk.” A humiliation for participants and pedestrians alike.

  2. You want children to succeed? Give them a 60-70’s style K-12 education and a 4 yr. liberal arts college education. You’ll have a superstar, someone who can think critically, has creativity/innovation skills which will ensure his/her personal, professional success..

  3. I am interested in means to make our public schools superb. I think that recognizing good teachers (it would be my expectation that the vast majority should be good, very good and excellent teachers – and those would be the ones who get to KEEP their already very GOOD jobs) is an important aspect of making our schools superb.

    I think that identifying the bad teachers and removing them from their jobs is equally important.

    This is THE JOB of the principal of each school. But since in fact the Leftist corrupt Teachers Union runs our public schools, this job of identifying lousy teachers and removing them from their jobs must be done “over the heads” of the Principals and the corrupt School Administratiors (i.e. those who are in the pocket of the Teachers Union, rather than actually serving the children-parents and the public).

    It seems that the “only” way to go over the heads of the corrupt School Administrators (i.e. Teachers Union lackies) is to use external objective “report card” type mechanisms such as is currently being reported in the highly suspect Leftist “media” propaganda rag called the LA Times (which I happily recall is currently in financial bankruptcy).

    It would be VASTLY better if the Principal of each school was able to exert actual hiring firing and financial compensation control over the teachers in his school, and thus hopefully make such decisions based on more than a single scorecard report. But the thoroughly corrupt Leftist propagandist Teachers Union has corrupted and nearly destroyed our entire public education system, so the normal mechanisms do not work to produce and support effective teachers of intellectual tools and skills – that is, arithmetic and reading and writing – rather than the “ability” to mouth Leftist propaganda.

    So, it is important who we elect to our public School Board of Trustees. Those board members have the ability to change-remove corrupt (i.e. Teachers Union controlled) Public School Administrators, who in turn hire and fire (and delegate or withhold authority from our individual school Principals).

    If we, the voting citizens (and parents) of Fullerton elect individuals to our School Board who are beholden to the Teachers Union then we condemn our schools and children and community to lousy performing schools whete the kids only learn “politically correct” Leftist propaganda and “community organization” bully tactics (as oppossed to respect for individual liberty and personal responsibility) as the basis for our society in the future.

    We are currently suffering from the Leftist propaganda successes of the usurpation of political power in America by the Obama-Communists, in complete disregard of our Constitutional limited powers government structure.

    Norby is the wrong guy to be promoting this message – his job is to CUT SPENDING by our horrid-bloated State government. If that is not a big enough job for him then why don’t we have a balanced State budget which cuts spending and reduces government debt?

  4. If it’s a test-based scorecard vs. NOTHING, which is what I get now, I’ll take the scorecard. We deserve to know how our teachers rate.

  5. Too bad parents don’t get a scorecard on how they do with things like, get their kid to school on time, read to them at night, help with homework, be involved in their class assignments etc. Probably too much to ask.

  6. Here is just a snippet from the “corrupt” and “leftist” union response to this silly “value added” stuff: (I don’t really see a liberal slant in this snippet or complete article at all.) How can people not see that it is an unfair system? The whole letter can be found on the CTA website.

    “There is significant and widespread consensus that the type of value‐added methodology the LA Times is using generates significantly unstable measures of a teacher’s effectiveness at teaching standardized test subjects. A recent report, released just this past month by the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences (”Error Rates in Measuring Teacher and School Performance Based on Student Test Score Gains,” July 2010), concluded that there is a 20 percent likelihood that a teacher’s rating under such a system will radically shift from year to year. Other researchers have concluded that the instability of such measures may be significantly higher, generating swings of up to 35 percent of teachers moving from the most highly effective group of teachers in one year to the least effective group of teachers in the next.1 In other words, the teachers that the LA Times has seen fit to publicly shame as “ineffective” under its value‐added measure would be labeled “effective” if the value‐added measure were rerun for a different set of years. Or, to put the point bluntly, the LA Times rating of these teachers as “ineffective” is false.”

    So, a 20 point drop in test scores of a student means the student missed about 5 more problems on the test. We really need to fire a teacher based on 5 problems?

  7. Again, these scores aren’t being used to fire teachers. They exist to HELP PARENTS evaluate the effectiveness of their teachers. While they may not be perfect, they are far better than NOTHING, which is what the unions have been fighting for.

  8. Read the whole letter or even the part I copied. The “effectiveness” of the teachers varies from year to year depending on the students in their class.

    When they want to start putting this stuff in teacher evaluations they are interested in firing teachers. All the current “reforms” that are bandied about are an attempt to find “lazy” and “bad” teachers and fire them. Read Diane Ravitch’s book: The Death and Life of the Great American Public School System. She was one of the founders of NCLB and now realizes that it was a mistake.

  9. I’m curious. Did you put the words “effectiveness”, “lazy” and “bad” in quotes because you don’t believe that teachers can be any of these things?

  10. No, I was referring to the one person who was trying to put politics into this discussion.

    Certainly there are some lazy and bad teachers, but do you really think that all teachers are bad since the public schools are “failing”? That’s how we are made to look in the papers and by every political leader today. The reports of how little teachers make (see Yahoo!’s list of least paid college degrees) and the disrespect shown by most folks to the profession with the blame, I would think that most teachers are extremely dedicated to do the work theye do.

    If public schools get this scrutiny, then private and charter schools should also get the same. Let’s see those private school teachers improve their students every year. If they get top students that score 100 percent on CST, then they can’t raise up the scores and they will be ‘ineffective’ and ‘lazy’ as well.

    Sorry for the long reply to your question, but I’m fired up about this.

  11. Value-Added-by-Teacher is a tool for parents, teachers and administrators It’s already public information. Why run from it?

    It’s not just a matter of recognizing the non-productive teachers, but also recognizing those excelling in improving student performance. Only then can we focus on what they’re doing right–and get others to emulate it.

    Effective teaching is part attitude, part knowledge and part technique. It is that last part which teachers can most share.

  12. I think it could be used in some manner, but it should not be made public since it is not the best method to show the quality of teachers. There is no magic bullet.

    Please come up with another profession where the “ability” of the employees is listed in the paper. Are dentist’s listed by name as ineffective? If a dentist can’t get someone to brush their teeth, then they are obviously not a good motivator of good dental hygiene and should be out of work. I don’t think doctors, lawyers, or sales people have their names listed in the paper and labeled.

    One standardized test is not a fair way to evaluate teachers. How are P.E. teachers labeled effective or not? Are the students to be weighed? Can 30 minutes a day of exercise counter-act 12 years of poor diet, low exercise, and over-eating? What about foreign language, history, art, and band teachers? They are free and clear, right? Let’s only punish the teachers who are foolish enough to teach English and math. Here’s a link:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *