Periodic Assessment Number 2: Crisis of Confidence

A simpler image than usual of late. I was looking more for the startled posture, the defensive feeling, then for any greater piece of work.

I drew this about a month ago, when we all got together for a meeting about the second periodic assessment, and “data analysis.” Pledge LA brought in a special Suit Guest Star to drive the meeting, and establish “protocols” by which staff could “meaningfully analyze the results.”

This was ultimately a lecture with a series of bar graphs. If you can’t make your point with a bar graph, that suggests that you need to go back to school. Seriously.

A more interesting point was that teacher names were on the bar graphs, and shared with everyone. Teachers relentlessly hate that because they feel they are being evaluated by the performance. It’s kind of hilarious to me, really…because if you are doing your job, and teaching every day, the results should be something positive, that you can be proud of. Considering that these results are actually the futures of students…if you can’t stand by your performance, you should probably get another job.

A great deal of acrimony came out in this meeting. I had to actually negotiate peace between another english teacher and a VP.

At the end of it, I just didn’t think that the “data analysis” portion was all that meaningful. Really, we should be identifying students who are struggling, and attempting to get them services to get the scores, and skills, that they need.

As for my scores…they were very strong. Were they epic level like Periodic Assessment number 1? No, they weren’t, but still, almost all students showed an upward trend. That’s really what we are after…that each test, each assessment, shows intellectual growth. If the progress can be maintained, then really…all of the kids should get where we want.

Self consciously though…I wanted the curve to remain sharply inclined, instead of just inclined. Hence the protagonist feeling a bit defensive, and resolving to work harder.

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