The Department of Education is moving to upgrade the ratings of teachers at Brooklyn’s Dewey HS who were rated as “ineffective” after they challenged grade-fixing by then-principal Kathleen Elvin, The Post has learned.
Elvin was fired on July 8 after DOE investigators substantiated that widespread grade-fixing went on at Dewey to boost graduation rates — a practice students mockingly referred to as “Easy Pass.”
Teachers complained that Elvin and other administrators punished them with poor ratings for refusing to participate in the fraud.
The “ineffective” ratings of at least four of 16 tenured teachers who received them were overturned following appeals to a state arbitrator, sources said.
Those teachers had to sign a confidentiality agreement not to discuss the changing of their ratings.
Records revealed that half of Dewey’s 101 instructors got ratings of either “ineffective (16 teachers) or “developing” (35 teachers) in the 2013-14 school year.
That 50 percent failure rate compared to a citywide average of only 8 percent.
Given an "ineffective" rating for refusing to participate in fraudulent behavior involving grade-fixing.
Gee, that doesn't sound like an "objective" evaluation system to me.
And NYSED admits as much by overturning at least four of the "ineffective" ratings of tenured teachers who appealed them.
There may be more overturned ratings - we don't know the exact number because of the confidentiality agreements
But what we do know is this - if Elvin and her assistant principals used APPR as a weapon against teachers to perpetrate their fraud, other principals and assistant principals can use APPR as a weapon against teachers for other reasons as well.
Had Elvin not been exposed in the grade-fixing scandal, these teachers at Dewey would still be working with "ineffective" ratings on their records.
You can bet there are other administrators elsewhere who have handed out "ineffective" ratings for a variety of reasons that have nothing to do with the effectiveness of the teacher.
We learned from Chancellor Farina this week that APPR is a sham when she acknowledged that "effective" teachers can have their ratings adversely affected by switching schools and going to teach in a school with high poverty/high homelessness demographics.
And now we've learned from the NYSED that teachers can have their APPR ratings manipulated by administrators with agendas - such as the one by Kathleen Elvin, which was, join her in her grade-fixing fraud or receive and "ineffective" rating for the year.
Another method is forcing teachers to teach outside of their certifications.ReplyDelete
Yes, even if it's just one class, then observing them in that class.Delete
But wait, didn't our union leadership champion the fact that all these new evaluation procedures were transparent and couldn't be messed with?ReplyDelete
I guess it's just another "victory" gone astray.
Indeed they did.Delete
See comment below.
But UFT President Michael Mulgrew lauds this evaluation system, he helped put in place, as "fair and objective."ReplyDelete
UFT President Mulgrew Helps Bring Faulty Evaluation https://youtu.be/yUKygzuT8iM
Yup - Mulgrew's on record saying this one is better than the old one because it's harder to game by administrators. But we know that's garbage - it's as easy to game the Danielson nonsense as it was to game the old S/U ratings.Delete
What's the rationale/ excuse for keeping these successful appeals secret, and is this a decision of NYSED orReplyDelete
Good questions - I don't have the answers to either but I suspect the answer to the first one is so that NYSED and/or the NYCDOE do not have to admit how easily manipulated the APPR rating system is by administrators.Delete
There is one bit of "good" news in this: The fact that an ineffective rating has been overruled and upgraded to effective. If these four teachers can have their rating upgraded due to a malicious principal, it means that all 80,000 teachers in NYC should now have the same opportunity to challenge these ratings if they can prove that they were used as a weapon by an administrator.ReplyDelete
Yes, but this is only after proven "fraud". How many "ineffective" ratings are handed out by administrators never convicted of a fraud investigation that go unchallenged?Delete
It’s a start. It will be very helpful with lawsuits. This shows/proves that AP’s and Principals play games (and that the powers that be know it). This can be connected to the winning lawsuits which reversed U’s to S’s. The lawsuit about the state giving the Long Island teacher an Ineffective on test scores hits the other half. Good lawyers can build the case and I bet it could become a class action lawsuit. I least I hope.Delete
John Flanagan said he is "pro-teacher" in Buffalo the other day, yet he has spent the past five years doing everything possible to destroy the teaching profession along with public education. He is a creep and a liar, pure and simple. Yet NYSUT saw fit to give him $7,750 in contributions in 2014. It makes me sick that I have to pay $1,000 in dues to an organization that caves in when the chips are down and is inept in every single way.=ReplyDelete
Fariña and NYSED shd really start reading this blog. It's been stated on here many times that APPR is a sham. I personally wrote this on this blog a year ago. You cannot work and be rated highly effective and ineffective. It's absurd. Two different schools doesn't change how a teacher teaches. A colleague of mine now works at my school where he's effective. Last year he was ineffective because he was in a crappy school. It's all about the kids. AGAIN, YOU ARE ONLY AS GOOD AS YOUR KIDS. That's it. You think the principal at Boys & Girls HS is worse than the principal of HS for American Studies? Ridiculous. Right place at the right time while sucking off the network bull shit leaders.ReplyDelete
What is ridiculous is that the news media calls for giving even more power to management when simple sense dictates that the growth of management under the Bloomberg years resulted in administrators poorly qualified professionally and ethically to judge educators. I don't believe this is an unforeseen by-product; I believe it is at the heart of the purpose of education reform as currently practiced in this country.ReplyDelete
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