Education: Going public with process

Do our local teachers make the grade?

According to the latest issue of On Board, the New York state School Boards Association publication, the state Education Department plans to make public how a group of teachers fared through the Annual Professional Performance Review. Officials say the teachers and schools will not be named, but grouped into a region.

“We will not release any individual results for any teacher or principal,” Jonathan Burman, state Education Department spokesman, told On Board. “We will release aggregated data that says, for example , ‘of teachers in County A, 12 percent were highly effective, 66 were effective, etc.’ ”

Teachers, through a lengthy process that takes place statewide, receive a rating of highly effective, effective, developing or ineffective. A portion of the result comes from state tests while others come from local observation.

The process is only one year old. How each district rates teachers also is a factor to consider.

Parents can request to know ratings of their child’s teacher, but the local school has the final say on releasing the information.

Soon, all will see just how teachers and principals in Chautauqua County – overall – rate. No other group of public employees will receive that type of scrutiny.

That may not be fair. But in the new era of New York state accountability, it is a reality.