Jay Mathews wrote that he no longer believes that teachers should be evaluated by test scores.

However, he went on to say that teachers should be judged by their principal, and that principal should have the absolute power to hire, pay, judge, and fire teachers at will. If we don’t like the principals, we should fire them and get others.

Here is the answer to Jay by Carol Burris, who was just named principal of the year by her colleagues in New York State:

The better answer is to put in place systems of supervision and evaluation like [Montgomery County’s] PAR [Peer Assistance and Review]. This obsession that we can ‘fear and fire’ our way to excellence, is nonsense. ‘Give them (principals) the power to hire, compensate and fire staff members as they see fit”. This principal says….bad idea. As is doing the same for principals. That is still putting evaluation by tests scores in a primary place. It will also make schools more political than they already are and create more “Atlantas”.