DC Area Gets Poor Grades for Identifying Effective Teachers

Area school districts haven't fared too well when it comes to identifying and retaining effective teachers in 2008. Neither have they done a very good job firing ineffective ones.

The report card would make any parent cringe. D.C.'s overall grade was a F, while Maryland inched ahead slightly with a D- and Virginia was just a little better with a D+. Sandi Jacobs, with the National Council on Teacher Quality, says the third through fifth year of teaching is when educators become consistently effective. Yet this is when many of them leave the profession. Jacobs says that's why it's important new teachers get mentoring and evaluated.

While Virginia requires all new teachers receive mentoring, Maryland requires it for some teachers, and D.C. got an F not requiring mentoring. None of the three have a policy regarding teachers who have negative evaluations. Neither were their pension policies portable, flexible or fair to all workers.

Kavitha Cardoza reports...

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