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Value-Added: Premature, Inappropriate Uses Raise Red Flags

image from farm5.static.flickr.comAEI's Rick Hess goes to great lengths to parse out the debate over the LA Times' value added series and the controversial study that came out last week about its merits, but I'll boil it down for you: Value-added models don't have to be perfect to be useful but are extremely sensitive to minor variations in design and other factors.  Newspapers probably shouldn't interpret critical studies as supportive ones.  Publishing teachers' individual scores is a dumb idea. But then again you already knew all that didn't you?  Because I've been saying it for months now, and more and more folks (including Wendy Kopp) seem to agree.  Thanks, Rick.  Image via


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Another key issue from the media criticism standpoint and speaking as a former newspaper editor: It's wildly out of line for newspaper editors and reporters to determine how to evaluate teachers at all. It's outside their skillset, beyond the role of the media, beyond the scope of their profession -- just flat-out wrong. They are supposed to be messengers, not judge and jury (and, some would say, executioner).

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