E.D. Hirsch, Jr., the founder of the Core Knowledge curriculum, wrote an article opposing value-added teacher evaluation, especially in reading. Hirsch supports the Common Core but thinks it may be jeopardized by the rush to test it and tie the scores to teacher evaluations. He knows this will encourage teaching to the test and other negative consequences.
Hirsch believes that if teachers teach strong subject matter, their students will do well on the reading tests. But he sees the downside of tying test scores to salary and jobs.
“The first thing I’d want to do if I were younger would be to launch an effective court challenge to value-added teacher evaluations on the basis of test scores in reading comprehension. The value-added approach to teacher evaluation in reading is unsound both technically and in its curriculum-narrowing effects. The connection between job ratings and tests in ELA has been a disaster for education.”
He is right. Will the so-called reformers who recently became Hirschians listen?