Education Experts Protest Planned Teacher Evaluation System

CHICAGO (CBS) — The Chicago school system’s new teacher evaluation program is running into some questions.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Bob Conway reports, a group of education researchers wants Mayor Rahm Emanuel to delay the widespread implementation of the program and move forward at a more modest pace.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bob Conway reports

They group says a slower pace of implementation will provide a better indication of just how much of a teacher’s evaluation should be tied to student achievement, the Chicago Tribune reported.

The group, Chicagoland Reformers and Advocates for Transformative Education (CReATE), is made up of 88 education professors and researchers from 15 local universities, the Tribune reported. They delivered a letter to Mayor Emanuel, Chicago Public Schools chief executive officer Jean-Claude Brizard and the Chicago School Board on Monday, calling the planned evaluation system “flawed,” the newspaper reported.

The evaluation program CPS has in mind is part of a broader state education reform package, called the Performance Evaluation Reform Act, which was signed into law in 2010, the Tribune reported. The law requires student growth and academic achievement to be a significant factor in rating principals and teachers, in a major departure from how the process has been handled, the newspaper reported.

Teacher evaluations are currently one of several school reform issues being negotiated between CPS and the Chicago Teachers Union. Under the law, about half the district must implement the evaluation system by this fall and the remainder by 2013, the Tribune reported.

  • Wolf

    You cannot measure incompetence …the political class collusion with the unions keeps this dysfunctional and excessively costly system going …it is one of the biggest patronage army in the nation…fraud and corruption is the key here…

    • Susan424

      Patronage yes…..but only for those at the top. Classroom and support personnel do not have respect by anyone in that system. They do not become wealthy and increasingly can not even depend on the pensions they have paid into every year at nearly 10% of their salary. the city won’t fund their portion. Imagine if your employer refused to pay their part of your coial security tax! Plus when King Daley took over the schools, he “borrowed” 55 million from the teacher retirement fund….never to be repaid……
      Now if you are (were) a Daley kin, the opposite is true! Bill Daley, prior to becomong a Washington insider, sold computers to the school system which languished in a warehouse for years because the school electrical systems could not support them. They soon became obsolute and who knows what happened to them. Check it out. All true.
      So before you begin to malign ALL in the union, why not subsitute teach for a day, or at least volunteer and see what the teachers have to put up with on a daily basis. Its amazing that any kid learns at all in a crowded classroom (up to 40 kids in kindergarten!) with as many languages being spoken to boot.
      Bottom line….kids who WANT to learn will…and those who DO NOT and DO NOT CARE won’t! So a teacher who does teach and students who do learn are ignored because of those student who won’t.

      • zatso

        Susan, your right on,


  • Stacy

    I work as a clinician in CPS. There are students who come to school late and sleep everyday because life at home is so chaotic. We talk to the student about an appropriate bedtime. We have bought him an alarm clock and taught him how to use it. We have met with the parent who claims there is nothing she can do to get her son in bed at a reasonable hour. And yet the teacher is accountable for his performance? I observed another student alseep on his make-up ISAT test. His mom was arrested the night before and he was awake until 3 in the morning. And yet his teacher is accountable for his performance?

  • xomaman

    As a CPS art teacher, I wonder how I’ll be “evaluated” next year…assuming I have a JOB next year. Whatever happens I’ll survive. I feel sorry for the students. Oh I forget, da mayor is “doing it for the children’! OK right…

  • individuala

    The teacher’s union will invest extreme time and dollars to publicize the extraordinary cases (mom was arrested; bad parents) to make their point. What about the 75% of kids who come from good families? Who are you blaming then for poor student performance? I have four kids in CPS. Except for the one who is in a selective enrollment and receives resources that are off the charts, I’m frequently in the schools and have experienced the teacher lethargy first hand. They are disgruntled at working the proposed 40 hours week and are going thru the motions of education. I’ve not yet read the performance criteria but am hopeful that it will take into account extraordinary situations. Teachers – like all employees – need to be evaluated, mentored, and held accountable even if that means termination for poor performance. And YES CTU, there are valid ways to evaluate peformance!

    • tom sharp

      I totally agree with all the above comments. I can save a lot of time and money: Its about the Kids wanting to learn and the parents supporting and valuing education. The teachers and principals can’t do their jobs with out those two things in place. The proof of this is that 15 ears after Paul Vallas and Gery Chico fired thousands of ghetto school teachers and dozens of principals along with changing the curricula and spending $billions, the inner city schools still are at the bottom of every educational statistic.

  • Jeani

    The 75% of children who are coming from good families are being robbed of a valuable learning experience because that tired and competent teacher has to stop with the very well thought out and planned lesson, and now discipline the one of the 25% who are not interested in learning nor care to be in school. This 25% seem to have no role model to support good learning habits. Teachers can not do everyithing from being the teacher, to the missing role model, to the social worker, to the healthcare provider, etc. Teachers spend a lot of time outside of the work environment planning lessons, talking with parents and social agencies, completing paper work including grades, and mentoring/tutoring those who get left behind.

  • zatso

    Parents are at the root of the educational crisis.

    Wake up people!

    Common Sense is missing. Rahmster, like Duncan, Vallas, and current head can’t teach, so they try to administer.

    Chicago, you got what you deserve for not speaking up in the beginning.


  • Related. Didn't have a choice.

    When I read some of the comments above I wondered if they are about a teacher or a student? The students talk and I have heard them. Teachers arriving late, drunk, hungover, fighting with their boyfriends/spouses/kids on the phone while holding class. To the good teachers out there, don’t take it personal if you are not at fault. There is need to defend yourself if you are doing your job. It’s the lazies that shoudl be let go!! My sister is a CPS/counselor. The lady is nuts!! I can’t believe she actually counsels. She has several personalities. She has been bounced around to different schools. She herself will not send her daughters to a Chicago Public school. She faked living in Oak Park so that her daughter could attend school there. She is not the only one. You should see all her teacher friends. Bunch of nuts who are interested in the paycheck, all the days off, early retirement, summers off, etc. I am not proud of the fact that we are related but I keep her as far away as possible. Our children are in trouble. There are good teachers out there. I just believe there are more bad than good!!

    • tom sharp

      No one said there were no bad teachers. The problem with them usually (and i worked with education at all levels ) stems from the fact that they majored in education and really don’t know a real subject as well as they should. If you shut down the diploma mill colleges, e.g., Chicago State and don’t allow people to “Major in Education” at least half the “bad teacher” problem is solved. Unfortunately for you and yours, the teacher is not the key variable in education. You can stick 20 golden Apple winners in the ghetto schools and they will still be years below average in reading and math for years to come. The root of the problem is socioeconomic and until the idiots in charge at City Hall and CPS face up to that fact nothing is going to change.

  • individuala

    One of my best friends is a principal in a HS. Principal tells stories of it being impossible to get teachers to chair student clubs, newspaper, activities or do tutoring. Even Academic Decathalon which is for the most “motivated/good” students the teachers were like “um. Yeah. No thanks unless you pay me for it or give me an additional teaching period off “. Of course there is no budget. Teachers would not tutor during their lunch break even when they were caught eating during class periods. They wanted lunchtime to grade papers so they didn’t have to take them home. Test scores come back low, school gets put on academic probation and finally when faced with job loss they start volunteering to tutor or do ACT prep only to save their jobs. That’s what I’m talking about.

  • Get an Edumacation before you start teaching!!!

    Yep!! I used to get back notes from my kid’s teacher with all kinds of spelling errors. Unbelieavable!!

  • xomaman

    For thoughs who really don’t understand what’s going on here, let me explain. We are at a turning point of just what “public education” is. The corporate testing companies are in the process of taking over public education as we all experienced it. The only thing in the way are the FAIRLY paid union teachers, (I’m one of them). So the powers that be are using the press to vilify union teachers as the reason for the “LOW TEST SCORES” (see a connection here?)
    and all these “teacher bashing” posts prove my point! Remember that RAMBO said, and I quote, “TEACHERS ARE GIVING THE KIDS THE SHAFT!” (ouch). And he told the teacher union president “F@#$ YOU!” Nice… So the plan is to turn over all public schools to private charter school companies, saving a ton of money on cheap unqualified teachers without any unions and continue to test the kids to death. But I forget…”It’s for the children”

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