You have probably heard of the Vergara decision in CA where a judge ruled that it’s teacher rights to due process mostly or only that are responsible for low achievement among poor, black or brown students. I haven’t written anything original on this, but here is some statistical discussion cited by Diane Ravitch. I also recommend looking at Jersey Jazzman.
Here in DC, teachers have already lost almost all tenure and seniority rights, and well over 90% of the teachers in DCPS and the charter schools were hired and “trained” under the Rhee-Henderson chancellorship regime, or have been already replaced several times over.
So you can’t blame any black-white or income-level achievement gap in DC on us VETERAN teachers and our jobs-for-life, because we either retired or got fired quite some time ago.
But what’s that? Oh, those NAEP results, concerning that achievement gap here in DC?
Well if Judge Treu’s arguments made any sense at all, then with removal of all DC teacher seniority or tenure rights (ditto for principals, too!) then DC should show the greates Gains anywhere in the US on closing that achievement gap.
Well, guess what?
DC — both public and charter — continues to have the VERY LARGEST ACHIEVEMENT GAP IN THE NATION.
THERE HAS BEEN NO NARROWING OF THE GAP.
The judge is wrong on all of the facts, but the other side had all the money for the best lawyers.
Guy Brandenburg

Sent from my iPhone so full of hilarious errors… ;-€}}
Begin forwarded message:

From: Diane Ravitch’s blog <comment-reply@wordpress.com>
Date: June 13, 2014 at 10:00:27 AM EDT
To: gfbrandenburg@gmail.com
Subject: [New post] The Statistical Error at the Heart of the Vergara Decision
Reply-To: “Diane Ravitch’s blog” <comment+p6kq961q173snstbha30bbwt@comment.wordpress.com>

Respond to this post by replying above this line

New post on Diane Ravitch’s blog

The Statistical Error at the Heart of the Vergara Decision

by dianeravitch

Jordan Weissman, a business correspondent for Slate, read the Vergara decision and noted that the judge’s conclusion hinged on a strange allegation. The judge quoted David Berliner as saying that 1-3% of the teachers in the state were “grossly ineffective.” The judge then calculated that this translated into thousands of teachers, between 2,750 and 8,750, who are “grossly ineffective.”

Weissman called Professor Berliner and asked where the number 1-3% came from. Dr. Berliner said it was a “guesstimate,”

He told Weissman, “It’s not based on any specific data, or any rigorous research about California schools in particular. “I pulled that out of the air,” says Berliner, an emeritus professor of education at Arizona State University. “There’s no data on that. That’s just a ballpark estimate, based on my visiting lots and lots of classrooms.” He also never used the words “grossly ineffective.” And he does not support the judge’s belief that teacher quality can be judged by student test scores.

Dr. Berliner mailed Weissman a copy of the transcript to show that he did not use the term “grossly ineffective.”

Weissman then called Stuart Biegel, a law professor and education expert at UCLA, to ask him “whether he thought that the odd origins of the 1–3 percent figure might undermine Treu’s decision on appeal. Biegel, who represented the winning plaintiffs in one of the key cases Treu cited, said it might. But he thought that the decision’s “poor legal reasoning” and “shaky policy analysis” would be bigger problems. “If 97 to 99 percent of California teachers are effective, you don’t take away basic, hard-won rights from everybody. You focus on strengthening the process for addressing the teachers who are not effective, through strong professional development programs, and, if necessary, a procedure that makes it easier to let go of ineffective teachers,” he wrote to me in an email.”

dianeravitch | June 13, 2014 at 10:00 am | Categories:

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