News

Majority of public school parents don’t support linking teacher evals to student test scores

An annual poll surveying the public about American education found that the majority of public school parents aren’t a fan of the idea that teachers should be evaluated on the basis of their students’ standardized test scores.

From the Associated Press:

The Gallup Poll released Sunday found 55 percent opposed linking teacher evaluations to their students’ test scores. Among those with children in public schools opposition was stronger, at 63 percent.

Standardized tests are necessary, but there’s an overreliance on them, said Joshua Starr, CEO of Phi Delta Kappa International, an association for educators, and a former schools superintendent. PDK, which supports teachers and educational research, paid for the poll conducted by Gallup.

“Parents see the work their kids bring home every night,” Starr said in an interview. “They go to teacher conferences, and they’re more likely to judge the school and the quality of the teacher based on that, than solely using test scores.”

As many schools prepare for a return to the classroom in the coming weeks, more than 40 states are moving forward with plans to evaluate teachers and principals in part on how well their students perform on standardized tests. It’s something the Education Department has supported and encouraged through its Race to the Top grants to schools and other programs. While the department says other factors should be considered, such as student work and parent feedback, teachers, unions and others worry there’s too much emphasis on test scores.

North Carolina uses a system called EVAAS to evaluate its teachers, and partly relies on student test data to rate teachers’ effectiveness. Many teachers here don’t embrace the idea, saying that student performance on standardized tests is often influenced by a host of factors outside of the classroom—and outside of a teacher’s control.

A majority of respondents to the Gallup poll opposed the use of Common Core, a set of math and English standards that’s currently being reevaluated here and could be replaced, depending on the outcomes of a legislative review commission and lawmakers’ subsequent actions.

And while most supported the notion of school choice, only 31 percent supported school vouchers—a program that has recently come to North Carolina and was upheld by the state’s Supreme Court following a court battle challenging the idea of using public dollars to support unaccountable private institutions of learning.

Click here to see the full results of the 47th annual PDK/Gallup Poll of the public’s attitudes toward the public schools.

One Comment


  1. LayintheSmakDown

    August 24, 2015 at 1:49 pm

    Another misleading headline signifying very little. Of course parents don’t support evaluating teachers ONLY on standardized tests. Unfortunately though part of the evaluation must include student achievement in some way so the scores must be a component. I don’t recall seeing any movement to only having test scores be the sole determination of teacher success in NC, so once again another hysterical story with little basis in the real world.

Check Also

Changing hats, but my focus remains on education

Dear NC Policy Watch readers, It’s been a ...

Join Our Team

NC Policy Watch is hiring two new journalists to join our award-winning team. Click here for more information.  

Top Stories from NCPW

  • News
  • Commentary

Trustees at Historically Black Colleges and Universities oppose the change over concerns that conser [...]

As part of our ongoing effort to inform North Carolinians about the state judiciary, Policy Watch is [...]

In testimony, the facts didn't always add up to the truth Kenneth Harrison III slouched in a ha [...]

Fourth Circuit ruling should offer protection in North Carolina WASHINGTON — Transgender teen Andrew [...]

There has never been a more urgent time for Congress to step up and pass a relief package that ackno [...]

In 2008, artist Shepard Fairey’s iconic image of then-Senator and presidential candidate Barack Obam [...]

The post The Postmaster always gives twice appeared first on NC Policy Watch. [...]

As unemployment has climbed and household budgets have been stretched thinner and thinner, more fami [...]