Teacher evaluation system deserves failing grade

As a retired educator with 35 years of service, I can only describe the job evaluation criteria outlined by the Maryland Council for Educator Effectiveness with 50 percent of a teacher's rating to be based on student performance as absolutely asinine ("Md. to rate teachers on student progress," June 21).

The evaluation system approved by the council contains little in the way of uniform standards. For example, teachers who are assigned to schools located in poor areas and dealing with students living with high unemployment rates, broken homes, youth gangs and many other unfavorable conditions which would naturally breed a nonchalant attitude toward the value of an education, will likely result in students who score poorly on standardized tests. Those growing up under different circumstances will probably fare better.

In my opinion, the council needs to go back to the drawing board and develop a system that takes into account such factors. It just doesn't add up to a satisfactory answer as it now stands.

Quinton D. Thompson, Towson

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