The Jindal reforms of 2012 are among the most hostile to teachers of any legislation passed in recent years. Under the terms of the law, every teacher’s job hinges on student test scores, which count for 50% of the teacher’s evaluation.
As readers of this blog know, the Jindal reforms are hostile not only to teachers but to public education, in that more than half the students in the state are eligible for vouchers, and dozens if not hundreds of charters will open, draining resources from public education.
Why would anyone outside the fringes of the far-right facilitate this bold attack on a democratic institution?
The Gates Foundation has just awarded $300,000 to Jefferson Parish to assist in implementing test-based accountability for teachers.
When I met with a very high-ranking official of the Gates Foundation last year, he insisted that the foundation was not supportive of high-stakes testing. I think there is a disconnect here. The foundation is helping a district implement a law that promises to fire teachers based on the test scores of their students.
The same is true in Florida, where a Republican legislature passed legislation that stripped away all job protections from teachers and tied their future to test scores. Hillsborough County in Florida is one of the Gates Foundation’s major teacher evaluation sites.
I wonder: how many years must we wait before we see “a great teacher” in every classroom in those sites that take the advice of the Gates Foundation?