… ask the right questions.
Funny that Mark Johnson asked us how to make North Carolina’s schools better. We answered by making sure that he would not have an office next term in Raleigh that directly impact public education.
But here he is referring to that biannual tradition known as the North Carolina Teacher Working Conditions Survey, and this year it was packaged as “ASQNC.”
The results from the 2018 version did nothing more than demonstrate the disconnect that those who want to “re-form” schools have with the reality of schools; they displayed that what really drives the success of a school are the people – from the students to the teachers to the administration to the support staff and the community at large.
It is hard to take a survey very seriously from DPI when the questions never get beyond a teacher’s actual school and district. There was never any way to convey in this survey from the state what teachers think about the state’s role in education or how standardized testing is affecting working conditions or how funding affects schools’ abilities to reach students.
It should ask teachers’ views not only of their school, but MORE of their perceptions of state leadership.
Johnson also issued one of his now “infamous” letters with the survey. Below is a copy of the one given to Charlotte-Mecklenburg teachers.
It’s that second page that should be really looked at for its airy substance.
Name one place in the budget where professional development has been put back. From WUNC.org in December of 2018:
“The General Assembly cut the budget line item for teacher professional development from the state budget during the recession and has never restored it. In 2008, the state budgeted $12.6 million for educator professional development. That line item has been reduced to zero. Now schools might pay for some professional development from other budget areas—like federal funding or state funding to support digital learning — or teachers can turn to grants.”
And that updated technology? Is he referring to the iPads? iStation?
But there is really no plan in this – just manufactured praise. As was reported in EdNC.org last week:
In the wake of legislation that eliminated the North Carolina Final Exams, the State Board of Education considered how to replace the teacher effectiveness data provided by the assessments Wednesday.
They couldn’t come up with a good answer. At least not before next year.
“What is being asked is really not possible,” said Tom Tomberlin, director of District Human Capital at the state Department of Public Instruction.
The issue is that for a number of teachers in the state, scores from the NC Final Exams are the only way the state can measure effectiveness. Tomberlin said there are almost 61,000 teachers who get at least some of their student growth scores from the NC Final Exams. Those scores are used to determine effectiveness.
However, there are 12,000 teachers who only receive student growth scores from the NC Final Exams.
“They will get no growth information once the North Carolina Final exams go away,” Tomberlin said.
Oh, and Johnson has never expressed any inclination to change the school performance grading system to reflect those changes. Eliminating those tests without altering SPG formulas (actually, just get rid of them altogether) makes some arbitrary tests even more powerful.
As a teacher, I have never been sent anything about monies for new supplies or more resources for construction or updating.
Oh, there’s no budget that has been passed.
And Mark Johnson has spent absolutely no time in fighting for one. All he wants is to get credit for things that have not happened.
“Parental engagement campaigns?”
“Steps to support us in improving student conduct?”
Quick! Name them!
Until Mark Johnson can rebut this post in response to our “salary increase,” then this claim is the emptiest of them all.
The only good thing about the 2020 version of the Teacher Working Conditions Survey is that it does not involve this: