This is how the DOE revealed our ratings.
It has come to our attention that some employees are having trouble viewing their Advance Overall Rating in our previous email. We sincerely apologize for any confusion this has caused. Your 2016-17 Advance Overall Rating information is detailed below.
Measures of Teacher Practice (MOTP) subcomponent: Effective
Measures of Student Learning (MOSL) subcomponent: Highly Effective
Overall Rating: Highly Effective
-The Advance Support Team
Well you are quite welcome Advance Support Team.
The truth is I'm not really sure how the numbers that made up each of the two parts of my rating were calculated.
I do know the American Statistical Association thinks Value Added Models - we may use a Value Added Model for some of us in NYC - are not a good way to evaluate teachers.
This is from the ASA:
VAMs should be viewed within the context of quality improvement, which distinguishes aspects of quality that can be attributed to the system from those that can be attributed to individual teachers, teacher preparation programs, or schools. Most VAM studies find that teachers account for about 1% to 14% of the variability in test scores, and that the majority of opportunities for quality improvement are found in the system-level conditions. Ranking teachers by their VAM scores can have unintended consequences that reduce quality.
This sounds very reasonable; doesn't it? But then again, my VAM says I am Highly Effective in that 1-14% range quite possibly on an English Regents I did not teach a class for. I am guessing that is the test they used for my rating since at Middle College we don't give any other Regents Exams. That test I did not teach a class for is worth 50% of my annual rating. Who am I to argue? The kids did well.
My rating in 2017 is as pointless as when most of us at Jamaica High School were receiving Developing or Ineffective in 2014 and we all magically improved the following year.
I have heard of a probationary teacher rated Effective overall who was discontinued. I am also aware that the DOE now subjects tenured teachers to incompetence termination hearings when they are rated Developing. Yes, the burden of proof remains on the DOE but that is how it always was under the old Satisfactory or Unsatisfactory evaluation system in incompetence proceedings. If teachers do ok in their rating under the latest rating systems, the DOE just ignores the rating and acts in a disgusting way anyway when they so desire. So when Michael Mulgrew touts his matrix as the greatest thing since the invention of the wheel, don't fall for it if you are Highly Effective, Effective, Developing or Ineffective.
I gather I can't file an appeal based on the absurdity of the evaluation system. Looking back on last year, I believe I did a good job mostly from the feedback I received from the kids even if certain unruly students destroyed certain classes sometimes. I also heard from a colleague who followed me in a room after one class and told me I always left that room with a huge smile on my face at the end of the period. That good feeling when you know you have had a good class isn't quantified on any of the stupid evaluation systems I have toiled under.
Let us paraphrase William Shakespeare for the final words on Mulgrew, Cuomo and the Legislature's latest teacher evaluation system:
It is a system made up by idiots, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.
When will the madness end?
No time soon in my opinion.