Two weeks ago I wrote a post about what’s going in DC’s public schools with their value-added-based teacher evaluation system, and more specifically about the 44 DC public school teachers who received “incorrect” VAM scores for the last academic year (2012-2013). While this occurred for more than just these 44 teachers because VAM formulas are always “subject to error” across the board, as per the official report just these 44 were misclassified because of a “simple” algorithmic error in the Mathematica Inc. (third party) formula used to calculate DC teachers’ scores. One of the 44 teachers was fired as a result.
Another “One of the ‘Forty-Four’ Teachers” is now speaking up and speaking out about this situation, using as a base for his reflections the email he received from the district with, most pertinent (in my opinion), all of its arbitrariness included. Check out the email he received, but also “the district’s” explanations of both the errors and the system, and in particular its weighting schema. As you read, recall another previous VAMboozled! post, whereas actual administrator and master educator scores (the scores at the source of the errors for this teacher) evidenced themselves as wholly invalid as well.
Read this DC teacher’s other thoughts as well, as they too are pertinent and very personal. My favorite: “What is DCPS’ plan for re-instituting the one teacher who was ‘fired mistakenly?’ I may not speak legalese, but I’m sure there are legal ramifications for this ‘error.’ Side note, suggesting the teacher was ‘fired mistakenly’ is akin to saying someone was ‘robbed accidentally.'”