Tuesday, October 26, 2010

This looks like a great event in DC on Nov. 1st:

On November 1, we will have a unique opportunity to celebrate the district's highly effective teachers. At A Standing Ovation for DC Teachers, the highest performing teachers in DC Public Schools with gather at the Kennedy Center to be honored as the heroes they are!  We have assembled an all-star "cast" for the evening, including Jim Vance as host; Secretary Duncan and Dr. Jill Biden as speakers; Chrisette Michelle and Dave Grohl performing; and Kerry Washington, David Gregory, Thomas Friedman, Mayor Fenty, Chairman Gray, Chancellor Rhee, and a few others as awards presenters.  

In this exciting time for education reform nationally, and interesting time of transition locally, Standing Ovation represents a key opportunity for us to send a signal to our teachers, and the education reform community, that this work will continue!  Please read the recent editorial in the Washington Post to learn more about the need to salute our high-performers: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/09/23/AR2010092306507.html.

Please visit  www.standingovationfordcteachers.org for more information and to buy tickets.

Here's the Washington Post editorial on this:

The District's best teachers finally get their due

Friday, September 24, 2010

AS D.C. SCHOOLS developed a rigorous evaluation system, attention focused on the teachers who were fired. But others have been judged excellent at their profession and, for the first time, are being rewarded accordingly under an individual pay-for-performance system that is viewed as the most ambitious in American public education.

In the first year of the IMPACT system, 662 teachers, or 16 percent of the District's teaching force, were rated highly effective. They are teachers such as Eric Bethel, who was able to lift the test scores of his fifth-graders at Marie Reed, and Roaenetta Mayes Browne, who, as a special-education teacher at Sharpe Health, expects and gets the most from children with challenging health problems. Data from the school system show that the highly effective teachers range across all experience levels. For instance, teachers with 20 or more years of experience make up 19 percent of the overall teaching force and 23 percent of the highly effective teacher corps.

The school system recently hosted a reception at Union Station honoring the teachers, who, along with outstanding charter school teachers, will be invited to "A Standing Ovation for D.C. Teachers," which is being produced by George Stevens Jr. on Nov. 1 at the Kennedy Center. Recognition also comes in more pay and unprecedented bonuses -- ranging from $3,000 to $25,000 -- under the performance pay system developed in collaboration with the Washington Teachers' Union. Bigger bonuses go to teachers of high-need subjects or in schools with students from low-income families or English-language learners.

A singular failure of the traditional teacher compensation system has been the inability to differentiate between those who do a good job and those who don't. D.C. Schools Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee raised millions of dollars in private money to finance performance pay by developing a system that fairly evaluated -- and rewarded -- teacher ability. The aim, of course, is to ensure that every child has a good teacher. D.C. Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray, soon to be mayor, has raised some questions about the evaluation system. We hope that he allows IMPACT -- with all its rigor and its rewards -- to continue.

 Subscribe in a reader