NYC Gifted and Talented Program and Testing

NYC Teachers are Not Happy About Ratings Released by Dept of Ed
February 27, 2012, 12:42 pm
Filed under: NYC Gifted and Talented Program | Tags:

As you’ve heard by now, the New York City Department of Education released teacher ratings for over 18,000 teachers. No, they weren’t evaluated on the OLSAT test results but for students performance on math and English exams. Click here and type in your school name in the little box to find out how the teachers at your school performed.

Teachers across the board seem to be concerned about the impact this may not only have on their individual careers but on the students they teach on a daily basis.  Let’s face it, would you want your work performance review (even if it was great!) posted in the most widely daily circulated publication in America? Most people, probably not.

Most teachers don’t seem to have an issue with the evaluation of test scores as part of the equation of performance but there are so many other factors that come into play when it comes to teacher performance.  We really need the best and brightest teaching our children and having these evaluations made to the public may steer some future teachers into another career from away from the classroom. Is this the message we want to send to our future teachers?

In a recent article from the NY Times, my daughter’s 2nd grade G&T teacher, Ms. Alison Epstein,  at PS 33 Chelsea Prep gifted and talented program was quoted as saying: “Unfortunately, the schools have become incredibly data-driven, which at times detracts from the overall curriculum. The pressure for teachers and children to perform for tests that do not really show how intelligent a student is, or how amazing a teacher might be, is substantial.”

I totally agree with Ms. Epstein’s statement that the evaluation of the entire curriculum should be the basis of the evaluation of the impact this will have on students performance – even outside the test scores. I don’t see testing going to the wayside in the near or long term but there needs to be a multi-prong approach when it comes to tracking and evaluating the progress of both our precious children and their amazing teachers.

You can read the FAQs for the teacher data reports from the NY Times.

3 Comments so far
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Unrelated to the NYT article itself, I was struck by how the picture of Ms. Epstein reminds me of a photo I have of my wife Sue – busily working at her desk – and, from what I can see, how Alison also reminds me of Sue, though in a younger, more “Goth” fashion. 🙂

Sue was, coincidentally, also a highly-regarded G&T (and English) teacher here in Virginia Beach, VA and was the 2005 Outstanding Gifted Teacher for Virginia Region II. Sue died in January 2006.

Remember Sue…

Please give Ms. Epstein my regards should you see her.

Comment by Rick Puckett

[…] Mom Co-Founder Michael McCurdy wrote on the subject on his personal blog: Teachers across the board seem to be concerned about the impact this may not only have on their […]

Pingback by NY Times Spotlights Top Teachers Following Release of Data Reports « Testing Mom

I am a NYC public school teacher too. I am trying to reach Alison Epstein about the Teacher Data Reports. Would you please ask her to contact me at ? Thank you.

Comment by Maribeth Whitehouse

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