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Teacher Evaluations Considered

Posted on Thursday, May 12, 2011 7:52am

As a weeklong teachers’ protest continues in Sacramento, a state Senate committee heard a bill that would change the way some teachers are evaluated, Wednesday.

The measure by Republican Senator Bob Huff would allow school districts to base layoff decisions on teacher performance. Currently, layoffs are based on seniority.

Huff says, “we should not have a quality-blind approach to those who are teaching our kids. We are continuing to mess up another generation.” He says it’s too difficult and costly to fire a bad teacher.

Listening to his remarks were about four dozen educators who testified against the bill. Oakland teacher Betty Olson-Jones countered, “because I don’t choose my students. They come with all kinds of issues. They come from homes that are in poverty. It is not fair to judge teachers by test scores or students or schools and it is not fair to discriminate between older teachers and younger teachers.”

A similar bill by Huff made it out of the same committee last year, but this one failed, though it may be taken up again in the future.

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