Yesterday was our second day in court in the hearing about our request for a preliminary injunction regarding the teacher evaluation system.
What a day is was! Our lawyers presented our final two witnesses, Dana Allen, High School Teacher at Highland High School and Dr. Audrey Amerin-Beardsley, Associate Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies with an emphasis on research methods at Arizona State University (check out her blog at http://vamboozled.com).
Together with our phenomenal lawyers, Shane Youtz and Dan McNeil, our witnesses all provided an unshakeable foundation for our case against the New Mexico Public Education Department.
Here are just a few of the highlights from yesterday’s action:
Dr. Audrey Beardsley testified that New Mexico has one of the most “arbitrary and capricious “ teacher evaluation models in the country.
Unlike other states in the nation, New Mexico uses “off the shelf” assessments, such as DIBLES, a norm-reference test and PED created End of Course Examinations to determine teacher effectiveness. These are tests that have not been validated to measure longitudinal growth of a student, and therefore should be invalid in assessing a teacher’s effectiveness on a student’s learning.
PED’s first witness, Dr. Pete Goldschmidt (the creator of New Mexico’s VAM), testified on the rationale he used to develop the New Mexico value added model. Although Dr. Goldschmidt contended that the evaluation model was weighted evenly across all teachers, he also explained the caveats that differ by district, school and teacher.
He ended by asserting his VAM model is the best in the nation.