UPDATED February 2, 2015: We submitted the link to this post to the official regulations.gov site where it was recorded. At the time of sending, almost 3500 comments from teachers, faculty at GSEs (graduate schools of education), and others with an interest in the training of public school teachers had submitted comments.
In our submission, we noted that an unrelated effort to K12NN’s initiated by California faculty at GSEs specifically named so-called “value-added measures” as “invalid and unreliable.” Over 150 faculty signed this letter.
In addition, EdWeek noted the vast numbers of comments, most of them identifying the use of student test scores to evaluate teacher preparation programs as highly problematic, undesirable, and not statistically or methodologically valid.
ONLY 6 DAYS LEFT — by February 2, 2015 — to comment on Federal regulations rule changes to Teacher Training and Preparation programs that would affect Schools of Education around the country. For a quick gloss on the issues, see the information gathered by the AACTE (American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education) here, or read the National Education Policy Center’s brief summary of how the proposed changes are likely to harm teacher preparation, by Prof. Kevin Kumashiro, Dean of the School of Education at the University of San Francisco. Brief talking points of the NEPC findings on the proposed regulations are as follows:
- They underestimate the cost and burden of implementing them, which Kumashiro says would be not only “quite high,” but also “unnecessary.”
- With no foundation in evidence, they blame individual teachers – rather than root systemic causes – for the gap separating educational outcomes of affluent and white students from those of economically disadvantaged students and those belonging to racial minority groups.
- They rely on an “improperly narrow” definition of what it means for teachers to be ready to teach.
- They bank on test-based accountability and value-added measurement of teachers in analyzing data about teacher performance – even though those measures and tools have been “scientifically discredited.”
- They are premised on inaccurate explanations for the causes of student achievement and underachievement, and as a consequence will discourage teachers from working in high-needs schools.
- They will likely limit access to the teaching profession, especially for prospective teachers of color and from lower-income backgrounds, by choking off federal financial aid.
You can use the special app below that annotates and highlights the actual proposed regulations. Simply sign into personal.crocodocs.com, create an alias (you can comment anonymously), and start paging through. Add your comments with the highlighter function or the comments function.
Shortly before the close of the comment gathering period — BY NOON PACIFIC TIME on February 2, 2015 — we’ll send the entire document with all comments on it to the U.S. Department of Education and release it publicly to major media with a press release.