Thursday, February 3, 2011

Best and Brightest???

Our old pal, Ruben Brosbe, has penned another blog entry calling for senior teachers to be laid off while he gets a raise. He says that this is the only way to recruit and keep "the best and brightest", among which Ruben presumably ranks himself.

But what does the DATA say? After all, data is god to Ruben and his A4E (Asshats4Educators) crew.

Ruben himself admits to dismal results on his Teacher Data Report, claiming a 41 percentile in ELA and and a 38 percentile in math. And that itself is misleading. Let's remember that teachers with 1-3 years of data are compared to each other, and not to veteran teachers. Had Ruben been compared to the veterans he excoriates, his scores would almost certainly been much lower.

Now consider his school. You can look at the results for the 4th grade, which Ruben teaches, for yourself. They dropped 17 percentage points in ELA, and a whopping 18% in math last year. Certainly Ruben must share some of the blame here considering his value-added (?) data.

So is Ruben one of the best and brightest? Certainly the data would say no. Of course, there may be extenuating circumstances. Perhaps he teaches in a high poverty school. Maybe there are homeless or abused kids in his class. It could be that the parents are largely uninvolved in the education of their children.

But as Ruben would be the first to tell you, having a great teacher in front of the class is the most important thing. A great teacher should be able to overcome all these hurdles. Children with no food? No problem! Great teachers can work miracles!

Unfortunately, the data gods have not smiled on Ruben. His numbers are lousy and there are no miracles in sight. If he really believes the best and brightest should be in the classroom, he should step down now and make some room for them.



Chaz said...

Mr Talk:

How wrong you are. According to his Emperor Mayor4Life Bloomberg, had your buddy been compared to senior teachers he would have come out as "effective" since he is cheaper and not vested when compared to them.

What are you thinking?

james boutin said...

I love that last paragraph.

Anonymous said...

The best and brightest will never teach, oh you might get a few who do it as a career, but why would they put up with what is now teaching.
My son wanted to be a high school band director, and he was tops in his high school and college class. After he did his student teaching, he came to me and said " I'm going to work on my MBA, this teaching mess is for the birds."