Summative Rating: UNSAT

After one year of unsatisfactory ratings on his or her job performance, a teacher may be placed on a directed plan of improvement. If that plan is not satisfied, that teacher may be terminated and replaced with someone else who can do the job.

This is what the legislature codified into law with our new teacher evaluation model, and I’m all for it.

And the premise ought to apply to the legislature as well.

The Supreme Court put them on a plan of improvement long ago. They have failed to meet the terms of that plan.

They were granted an extended special session, during which time non-policymakers spent more time in Olympia talking ed policy than the elected officials did. Still, no performance.

In the evaluation framework that judges my work as a teacher, action…nearly any kind of action…is enough to get me rated “Basic.” To be rated “Unsatisfactory,” my performance must demonstrate “no action when action is called for.”

There is no better phrase to describe our legislature right now than that.

I’m with the Seattle Times Editorial Board. No more special sessions. No more probationary periods to turn it around. Let the Supreme Court make the decisions if the Legislature won’t.

8 thoughts on “Summative Rating: UNSAT

  1. Amy Smith, NBCT

    Well said! My first graders will only be in First Grade once. There is no “Do over”. They don’t have time to wait for another year.

  2. Lee Ann J, NBCT

    There’s no excuse for what’s going on in Olympia. You’ve summed it up quite well with your analogy to the teacher evaluation system. Come on, folks, step up and work TOGETHER for what’s best for kids, or step out the of way and let someone else do it.

  3. Tracy Diane Lusby

    What good has ever come out of ‘special session?’ We need action to move forward.

  4. Christie

    The extended, non-productive haggling is not only inept, it is damaging. The financial strains the legislature inaction has caused are already being felt in my classroom. This has gone well past reason.

  5. Mandy

    Our society puts “things” before people. This is part of the problem (possibly the main problem). Legislators play with children’s lives like it’s a chess match – failing to consider these are beating hearts, these children are the future of our nation. Thank you, Mark, for shedding another light on this important issue. If we, as teachers, can be fired for unsatisfactory job performance – as in, failing to meet the needs of our students – the same should apply to legislators, for failing to meet the needs of their constituents.

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