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Monday, October 21, 2013

The Commissioner as Teacher

The recent forums developed by the New York State Education Department and designed to explain the Common Core curriculum, assessments and sundry related topics proved to be a fiasco. The remaining town hall style events were summarily dismissed and cancelled. Chaotic exchanges and claims that "special interest groups" disrupted the dialogue sprouted throughout the media channels.

Someone mentioned that the last forum could be a teachable moment. Maybe Dr. King can learn from the experience and return with a different approach and attitude. Time will tell, since he has announced that the attempt to clarify and promote the Common Core will shortly be resurrected, in an altered format.

I believe the reactions obscured a key point. I am surprised that the state teachers' association did not assess the performance of the commissioner with respect to the same instructional framework that has dominated the educational landscape in New York since the inception of the Annual Professional Performance Review.

How did the Commissioner's presentation rank in terms of the many domains that govern the outcomes of an observation of a teacher? How would his contribution to, and leadership of, the meeting be examined through the prism of Danielson's model of best practices? Where would he be on the HEDI scale - Ineffective? Developing? Effective? or Highly Effective?

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