Five years ago, teacher Susan Keyock moved from Colorado to New York City to continue her teaching career and was surprised by the lack of support provided to teachers in the City's public schools. Over the last five years, Keyock has observed the disparities among teacher quality in New York City classrooms:
After working as a public school teacher for five years in Colorado, I moved to New York City because of its reputation for being on the cutting edge of innovation in all things. Little did I know that when it came to teacher preparation and support, I’d be taking a big step backward... Our schools haven't caught up to forward-looking states like Colorado.
Keyock calls on the City and teachers' union officials to come to an agreement on a more robust teacher evaluation system that will provide educators with meaningful feedback on their performance:
Across the country — from Los Angeles to Newark to Washington — many districts have successfully negotiated new evaluation measures.
There is simply no reason New York cannot do the same for its teachers. There is simply no reason that a city that has been at the leading edge on so many other things can’t lead on this.
City officials and the city’s teachers union, the United Federation of Teachers, need to get beyond their eternal grudge match and start thinking about how they can help teachers enhance their profession — which, in turn, can only increase student performance. They can start by providing us with a stronger means to evaluate our work.