Idaho House passes pay-for-performance plan 44-26

By Brian Murphy
bmurphy@idahostatesman.com

The Idaho House of Representatives passed Senate Bill 1110, which implements a pay-for-performance plan for public school teachers, on Wednesday.

The bill now heads to Gov. Butch Otter's desk for signature. Otter is a co-sponsor of the legislation.

All 44 "yes" votes came from Republicans. All 13 Democrats were joined by 13 Republicans in voting "no" on the legislation.

Supporters said the bill would allow the state to pay teachers more for teaching in hard-to-fill positions, taking leadership roles within schools and improving student achievement. Critics complained that there was no way to pay for the plan.

The bill is part of school superintendent Tom Luna's "Students Come First" education-reform plan. It is the second part of the plan to pass the Senate and the House.

"This bill is another monumental step toward reforming our public education system. With this bill, Idaho now has the most comprehensive statewide pay-for-performance plan in the country. This legislation is all about recognizing and rewarding our great teachers for the outstanding work they do every day," Luna said.

“We can’t stop here. We must also reform our classrooms to ensure every student has access to a highly effective teacher every year and the best educational opportunities available.”

The House passed SB 1108 on Tuesday. That bill restructures the way local school districts can negotiate with teachers' unions and eliminates continuing contracts for new teachers.

The 13 Republicans who voted no on SB 110 were: Ken Andrus, Maxine Bell, Carlos Bilbao, Darrell Bolz, George Eskridge, Tom Loertscher, Lynn Luker, Janice McGeachin, Mike Moyle, Jeff Nesset, Leon Smith, Tom Trail and Rich Wills.

"The funding is not there to pay for it," said Moyle, R-Star, the House majority leader. "We could end up doing something like taking money away (from teachers' salaries), then giving it back."

Moyle said he considers the bill "an unfunded mandate," because "the money's going to have to come out of the (existing education) budget somewhere."

Moyle said he believes the bill is going to have to be reworked at some point.

"We're going to be looking at fixing it in the future," Moyle said. "I'd rather get it right the first time."

Reactions from Luna, Democrats

School superintendent Tom Luna:
“This bill is another monumental step toward reforming our public education system. With this bill, Idaho now has the most comprehensive statewide pay-for-performance plan in the country. This legislation is all about recognizing and rewarding our great teachers for the outstanding work they do every day.”

“We can’t stop here. We must also reform our classrooms to ensure every student has access to a highly effective teacher every year and the best educational opportunities available.”

House Minority Assistant Leader Elfreda Higgins, D-Boise:
“In a time of severe budget shortfalls, the Legislature has mandated a statewide system that will cost $38 million in its first year and $51.3 million in each following year without a funding source. This fiscal irresponsibility is not only detrimental to Idaho’s bottom line, but it’s plainly inconsistent with how this body should operate and the “fiscal conservative” mantra of many of the legislators."

Minority Caucus Chair Brian Cronin, D-Boise: “It’s curious that Supt. Luna never mentioned the vast educational achievement deficit that Idaho is supposedly suffering during his campaign. In fact, he only gave accolades to the system. SB 1108 is a misguided bill that purports to solve education shortcomings that we haven’t even clearly identified. Instead, its real purpose appears to be to eliminate the rights of Idaho’s teachers and silence their voice."

House Minority Leader John Rusche, D-Lewiston:
“The Governor has been behind this from the start, in spite of the serious policy questions and the gaping fiscal holes this legislation creates. We can only hope that he stops, reads the legislation and listens to those most intimately involved in the education of children—the parents and teachers of the State of Idaho.”

Voting differences between SB 1108 and SB 1110

SB 1108 passed the House 48-22 on Tuesday. SB 1110 passed the House 44-26 on Wednesday.

There were 42 Republicans who voted yes on both bills.

All 13 Democrats and seven Republicans (Bolz, Eskridge, McGeachin, Nesset, L. Smith, Trail and Wills) voted no on both bills.

Voted yes on 1108 and no on 1110: Andrus, Bell, Bilbao, Loertscher, Luker and Moyle
Voting no on 1108 and yes on 1110: Collins and Schaefer

Running blog of debate

The Idaho House of Representatives will begin debate on Senate Bill 1110, which implements a pay-for-performance plan for teachers. It is part of schools superintendent Tom Luna's "Students Come First" education-reform package.

Senate Bill 1108, which makes changes to labor practices between districts and teachers' unions and does away with continuing contracts, passed the House 48-22 on Tuesday.

The bill will not be read in full after the Democrats did not object to it.

You can read the bill here. You can watch the debate here.

Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d'Alene, is beginning debate on the bill. He said it is not true that the bill is "an unfunded mandate." It is a statutory requirement for the Legislature to fund it, so the money will come out of the education budget.

Nonini is talking about getting teachers in hard-to-fill positions.

"We have an education pay scale built on a 19th century model and we're trying to function in the 21st century," Nonini said. The current system "does not work" and "is based on inputs that are irrelevant."

Currently there is a pay grid based on a teachers' education and years of service.

Rep. Elfreda Higgins, D-Boise, asks whether there is evidence that pay-for-performance helps student achievement. Nonini said he does not have the evidence with him, but says it is his belief that the it will helps students.

Rep. Shirley Ringo, D-Moscow, is questioning where the funding will come from for the plan. Nonini said it is likely to come from "rearranging" the current dollars in the public schools budget.

The money argument comes down to this: Democrats argue that Idaho should not be taking money away from the existing education system to pay for pay-for-performance.

Luna paid for the plan, roughly $38 million in the first year, with changes to the student-teacher divisor in SB 1113, which is stalled in the Senate.

Republican supporters say it is no different than any other statutory spending requirement, such as salary-based apportionment, border contracts or pupil transportation.

Ringo is now debating the bill, arguing that it is difficult to capture students' growth across grade levels and disciplines such as math. Ringo, a former math teacher, said one year students are taking algebra and the next year geometry and to compare growth is difficult.

From @TomLuna, the superintendent's Twitter account: Several studies have shown pay for performance has positive impact on student achievement, including studies in Arkansas & Arizona.

Ringo said "teachers were somewhat involved" in the plan, but they wanted it paid for by "new money" and wanted a "commitment to fund it." Ringo said "we are not there yet" on those issues.

Rep. Phylis King, D-Boise, is now debating. "I believe educators come to the classroom with intent to do their very best," she said.

Rep. Grant Burgoyne, D-Boise, is now debating. Calls the plan a "bet." Says Idaho is "betting the farm on something that is untried and unproven."

Burgoyne says he would hate to see a time when the Legislature is "adjusting other funding formulas in education to fund this one."

Rep. Janice McGeachin, R-Idaho Falls, is debating against the bill for financial reasons.

"I'd like to be able to offer some additional opportunities for paying our teachers," she said. But she considers this "an unfunded mandate in that we have not identified a revenue that would be able to pay for this and by putting it into statute it will present further presser on ed budget in the future."

McGeachin has produced HB 221, which lays out Medicaid cuts of $39 million. She said she can't help but view those cuts as paying for this program.

"It’s a program that we’re putting into place that I haven’t seen how we’re going to be able to pay for it," McGeachin said, comparing it to the expansion of Medicaid in the federal health care law.

Rep. Donna Pence, D-Gooding, is debating the bill. She, too, is expressing concerns about funding. Pence is also worried about "teaching to the test."

Pence says the bill "is not a reliable measure of teacher effectiveness."

Rep. Wendy Jaquet, D-Ketchum, is now asking about the statewide Longitudinal Data System (LDS). There have been questions about the effectiveness of the LDS, Jaquet said.

Rep. Steven Thayn, R-Emmett, is now debating in favor of the bill. He is citing the New Plymouth School District, which has implemented a pay-for-performance plan. He said the district has 95 percent of its students reading at grade level entering the fourth grade, the highest in the state, which averages 77 percent.

Thayn is suggesting other ways to pay for the program, including allowing students to take required classes before their senior year or going to a trimester schedule.

Rep. Brent Crane, R-Nampa, is now speaking. Says we stand "at the threshold of history."

"You can say you're for education reform and pay for performance or you can vote for pay for performance and education reform," Crane said.

Rep. Brian Cronin, D-Boise, says the bill would allow merit pay to be "awarded based on the number of students that participate in an extracurricular activity.'

Nonini said while that's true, he has "more confidence in local school boards."

Cronin said: "I'm willing to give the superintendent that benefit of the doubt when he says there is no evidence that it doesn’t work, so why wouldn’t we try this? I can buy into that argument."

But Cronin says there is no "actual funding source" and worries it could be another empty promise to teachers in the state.

Cronin says "this is not fiscally responsible."

Rep. John Rusche, D-Lewiston, said he is concerned that in order to pay for this, it would require districts to "lower the pay of teachers, lay off teachers or go to local property tax payers to pay for this. ... It’s not responsible. It’s not what adults would do."

Rep. Linden Bateman, R-Idaho Falls, said he supports the legislation, but urged lawmakers to find additional money through a cigarette tax to pay for it.

Rep. Ken Roberts, R-Donnelly, is now debating the bill. Says we have talked about pay-for-performance for years and this is the fifth attempt at pay-for-performance. Roberts said what lawmakers are doing is debating a policy change, not a budget decision. Says it is not an unfunded mandate.

"This proposed legislation, as policy, is something that we’re proposing to do as a portion of their salary. It’s the first step in the state of Idaho now saying we think it’s important to compensate professional educators on the performance of their students," Roberts said.

Roberts said eventually, "I’d like to see us move to a stronger percentage on performance."

Roberts called it "monumental legislation."

Rep. Bill Killen, D-Boise, said the Legislature is not like a debate club. It has to consider not just policy implications, but its implementation and funding.

Rep. Marv Hagedorn, R-Meridian, says it is lawmakers responsibility to fund this plan.

"Are we going to respect the job that those professionals do for us. It’s what right," Hagedorn said.

Rep. Reed DeMordaunt, R-Eagle, is now debating. Says bill is better than No Child Left Behind because it does away with the bar and focuses on growth of students.

"This is an unprecedented opportunity to put something in place that will really make a difference," DeMordaunt said.

DeMordant is citing a 2007 Florida study that says pay-for-performance works. Says this is a "proven methodology. It does work."

DeMordaunt says lawmakers have "an opportunity to send the message that we value effective teaching, regardless of how it looks. But most important that we value that individual child."

Rep. Sharon Block, R-Twin Falls, is now debating in favor of the bill. Block is a former elementary school teacher.

Block says it is a "fair bill. It's based on children's growth and going the extra mile by teachers."

Rep. Christy Perry, R-Nampa, said the state does not need "another funding mechanism in order to do this." She said the list of fund sources for public education is long: 51% of general fund, liquor division, lottery, state endowment lands, property taxes, federal money, federal grants and school bonds.

"I can't think of another agency that has that kind of money being put into it," Perry said. "It's not a matter of finding more and more money, but focusing on the money we do have and the manner in which it's spent."

Rep. Ken Andrus, R-Lava Hot Springs, is now debating. Says he has heard a lot of negative talk about teachers. Says he has always been a proponent of merit pay. Said he has come to the "conclusion that you cannot base, justifiably, merit pay on a test score."

"Can anyone assure me that the money is coming?" Andrus said, then worried that the plan would be paid for by laying off 770 teachers as referenced in SB 1113.

Andrus said he is "concerned about the lack of buy-in. If this is a great plan, why haven’t the districts, administrators and trustee bought into it?"

Rep. Cliff Bayer, R-Boise, is now debating in favor of the bill.

Bayer points out that teachers supported the "Race for the Top" grant and its pay-for-performance component because it was additional revenue and not the shuffling around of existing money – something the Idaho Education Association has been saying for a while.

But Bayer said "this is good policy." He said the teacher salary grid is "broken."

"This is not status quo. This is the kind of change and reform and change in priorities that I appreciate," Bayer said.

Rep. Sarah Bedke, R-Oakley, is now debating for the bill. She is filling for her husband, Scott, who was injured last weekend.

"On behalf of my husband, I urge your green light," Bedke said. A green light is a "yes" vote. She said "my husband is and has been a champion of education reform."

Rep. Mack Shirley, R-Rexburg, says he favors the bill.

"it's a day to celebrate if we pass this," Shirley said.

"I don’t think the funding issue is quite a concern any more," Shirley said. "If we don’t do this now, it won’t happen. And that would be a great disservice to the teaching profession."

Rep. Dell Raybould, R-Rexburg, is using an extended analogy comparing students to potatoes. He says future Legislatures will be able to change the bill if needed.

'Let's plant the crop today and then if we need to we can adjust our fertilizer program a little bit as we go along," Raybould said.

Rep. Jim Guthrie, R-McCammon, debated in favor of the bill.

"This is a scoring system that will allow them to excel, to rekindle that competitive spirit," he said.

Rusche spokes for the second time, pointing out that Idaho spends $3,500 less per student than the national average and is 49th in the country in funding per pupil.

"I do not see how putting this unfunded mandate in place is fiscally responsible," Rusche said.

Nonini is now making his closing debate. Praises Rep. Brian Cronin, even though they disagree on nearly everything related to the Luna plan. Also says McGeachin should not see education and health and welfare budgets as competing.

Nonini again says it pay-for-performance "is not an unfunded mandate." Says the way we pay teachers is "archaic."

The bill passed 44-26 with 13 Republicans and all 13 Democrats voting against it.

Gee!

You mean a plan that most of the rest of the working class has to abide by?
How dare they! Don't they understand, the teachers are on a higher pedestal?

Sorry

Sorry I have been inviting you to spend some time at a local school and truly see what is going on in the classrooms; I did not know that you are not allowed any where there are children.

Hey idiotknow!

That's what we're supposedly paying the teachers to do, not just baby-sit!

Again go to a school see all

Again go to a school see all the teaching, not babysitting, going on in the classroom.

If you are so proud of the job teachers are doing.......

why would you not enthusiastically support "pay for performance"?

Because...

Because there is no money to pay them with. What are you going to do, throw IOU's at them?

We have a 14 trillion dollar deficit, so the freaks all say. EH?

----------

You must be lucky to be in the state I was born in!

the problem with

your logic, Xavier is that you fail to realize the political problem the Republican party just bought. I don't blame you, there are many simple minded amatuers latching on, like leeches, to right wing party spew right now. However, the party just bought a system that it has no idea how to fix. Leave salary, teachers and unions out of the equation and what you still now own is education in Idaho. Fund it or don't, doesn't matter. It's the Republicans problem to fix now. If scores go down, and education fails the public will blame the Republicans. What will Otter and Luna have left to blame then? Nothing. The public, even the ones that voted for Republicans time and time again will vote for the other side, and the Unions will be back stronger than before. The answer. politically, is don't grab on to things you can't fix. It's political suicide. Nationally, this trend will bite the party, because people didn't vote them in to cut everything, that is not the nature of the public. They voted them in to cut PORK. They didn't give any governor or representative the mandate to cut things like education. Bad mistake. Just gave the keys to the house and white house back to the dems. They will be sending a thank you card in the form of going nuts again with their "mandate" after then next election.

HATE HATE HATE

Thats all Xavier does.

Just callin em...

...like I see em!

You need gla$$es.

"No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government." Neil Peart

You don't call em.

All you do is parrot what the good ol' boys (Republicans)tell you. You have yet to come up with an original thought.

How can you see

When you don't attend. I have been a volunteer in the classroom for going on 7 years. My guess is the last time you were in a school is when you last attended. While school might have been nothing more than babysitting for you and yours for the greater percentage of the population it is a place for learning.

Better pay for better work

You mean people would have to work harder and do a better job to get a raise! That is unheard of in unions and government jobs!!! What is next? Firing people for being lazy and not showing up for work? How are the goof-offs in the world supposed to survive?

Precisely!

Don't figure, does it!

Again go to a school see all the teaching

Again go to a school see all the teaching, not babysitting, going on in the classroom. Show us some data of facts on all these lazy teachers. Look at the top performing schools in the state, these schools that would get the so called bonuses and ask why they do not think this is good bill.

Again, idontknow, if you are so proud of teachers'.......

accomplishments, why are you not enthusiastically supporting "pay for performance"?

Unfundable!

....and it will create an atmosphere of cutthroat competition that does not belong in a place where everyone needs to work together for the betterment of students!

Sounds like you are saying that

playing nicely is a job performance criteria. It would seem that those that don't are not performing well and would not "merit" as much increase.

In other words - dumb down the profession so that........

even the most marginal can survive - peacefully. Sure wouldn't want any competition in this profession.

So ya do get it!

Merit pay WILL help dumb down the profession....teach to the test because good scores are the answer to the world's problems.

If teachers are going to just teach the test.......

under a merit pay system, what does that say about the values held by those teachers? It says money is more important than their profession. If that's true, then we are back to the starting point on this whole issue.

tetpot

tetpot or not

teachers in Idaho have never made enough money to be considered professional, entry teachrs many times qualify for food stamps, not exactly a provession. And now Luna has it fixed for teachers to pay for their own liability insurance, thus relieving the school of providing that insurance, and the teachers can forfeit their pay so the merit teachers can experience a burst of wealth, for one year only. "And these things are great because teachers don't deserve a dime, they should volunteer their time and talents and live in a hovel and abject poverty." (this statement recorded at a local bar when I talk to someone)

So end statehood then and turn the territory over to 3-4 states.

Who know how to survive better anyway?

NEXT!!!!!!!!!!

----------

You must be lucky to be in the state I was born in!

If you read the bill

If you read the bill, it really does not pay for a teachers’ good performance. It hands out some unfunded or over stressed education budget for doing the things that we already do and receive payments for them. Paying for performance they way that Idaho has adopted will not foster collaboration among teachers and make teachers focus on the test. There are many things wrong with the bill. Just read it.

You want data and facts?

Here's a research project every parent and teacher can peform. Examine the classroom and homework assignments in grades 1-12 in pretty much any subject besides math. Compare the hours students spend demonstrating learning (knowledge or skills) using comprehensive writing skills with the number of hours spent performing fill-in-the-blank exercises, circle-the-right-answer or some other multiple choice format. Also check to see how often and in what subjects fill-in-the-blank exercises are graded for spelling.

Easy-to-grade school work may be great for teachers, but I don't think it benefits students. Consider, for example, that 16-year olds in Finland have to pass a comprehensive written exam to get into the upper secondary level we call high school. Those who can't pass this test are sent to a vocational school to begin job training, but of the 53% who do pass the written exam, what type of exercises grades 1-9 prepared them for that written exam? When students in Finland graduate from high school, they have to take another comprehensive written exam to enter the university. According to one American-Finnish teacher who blogs on education issues, very few students are able to pass the college entrance exam on their first try, and they are not allowed to seek outside help such as the courses and manuals sold in the U.S. to prep for SAT exams, GMAT, or LSAT.

American teachers lament they are not respected in society the way teachers in Finland and other countries are. Why is it so hard for them to see why? The differences in our cultures and the degree to which each culture values genuine intellectual achievement as opposed to numeric test scores doesn't even lend itself to useful comparisons.

Meanwhile in the U.S., state governments spend $18 billion a year on remedial English grammar/writing education for state employees. What does it cost taxpayers for the many remedial courses required on our college campuses? Just last week the WSJ published an article about what business schools such as Wharton are doing to improve the writing skills of their MBA candidates. Good grief!

Suing??

How many parents are suing schools and teachers in Finland??? Just a thought!

What was it all the etiquette fools always say?

If you engage the troll, he will attack! Ignore and he will be discouraged.

Sounds like then cruel arrows of you are anyway to me, and I've been online since 1997.

See the Wiz!

----------

You must be lucky to be in the state I was born in!

Just in!

The second bill just passed! As it should have! One to go!

Where is the component that includes "Parent Performance"?

Where is "parent performance" included in the pay for performance calculation? After hearing countless excuses from parents on why their student doesn't have their homework done, or why they haven't had time to prepare for their test, or how they think their teacher is being too hard on poor Johnny, I would like to know where parent responsibility is included?
As in any job, there will always be a percentage of teachers who are not performing at the desired level. However, why is it a teacher's fault that a student doesn't study for their exam? Doesn't do their homework? Doesn't show respect to adults and fellow students? A child's education is a partnership between parents and teachers. Each year, I see more and more parents who fail their part of that partnership and are quick to place the blame for their lack of parenting skills on teachers.

Oh, do you

Do you teach?

I taught for 6 years

I was a good teacher and very dedicated to my students. I make much better money with fewer headaches now.

Are you advocating some type of pre-qualification requirement...

to become a parent? Perhaps an Obama/Fed Govt pre-parental screening to see who can/cannot become parents.

Of course not

Just tire of teachers getting blamed for parents' lack of skills.

I will agree...

...it's a two-way street! However, these days a lot of parents think their job is done when they pop them out! Sad, but true!

I bet your parents are truly

I bet your parents are truly embarrassed about how you turned out. Polly want a cracker?

Community Support

I would add community support to the partnership. If the community does not support education, by way of adequate funding and such, even the best partnership between parents and teachers is pretty much doomed.

Wrong!

Again, it's not everyone else's responsibility to see your litter gets educated! That's the teachers and YOUR job!

How droll.

----------

You must be lucky to be in the state I was born in!

Like they haven't

been dealing with issue for decades. Oh well, some will hide behind excuses no matter what the issue.

so, let's not hold parents accountable?

Like a few bad apple teahers havent been a problem for a long time? Hey, if we are going to reform education why not address this problem also?

It works both ways, becourteous

Blaming parents for student performance when you are paid to oversee and grade that performance based on currculum and teaching materials you chose to utilize in your classroom does not set well with me. Are there bad parents? Yes. Are there lazy and insubordinate students? Yes. Are there bad and mediocre teachers? Yes. Where and how does this blame game end? How does blaming others solve any problem?

The solution may be fairly simple and as old as human nature. Hold both students and teachers accountable for their performance - think of it as a chain of command. Require parents to adjust to the academic standards, which hopefully are realistically high, and accept no excuses from the students or their parents for academic failure. If the problem turns out to be a bad teacher, this will be discernible by the number of students who are failing in his or her class, but we have to accept the fact that a certain percentage of students will not perform well for a wide variety of reasons, reasons which may or may not be faulty parenting or faulty teaching. The wise school and teacher will not over analyze the reasons behind underachievers.

Teachers need to stick to doing what they do best which is teach and not try to be child psychologists, social workers, sociologists, addiction counselors, mental health therapists, etc. You cannot possibly be good at all those things, and to the extent you set yourself up for failure by trying to wear 10 professional hats, you will lose the respect of the taxpaying public who just want kids to know how to read and write and think on as high a level as possible.

You ask why shouldn't parents be held accountable, and my answer is that I believe they are. Keeping criminal neglect and abuse out of this discussion, because it has its own system of accountability, I think most parents do a lot of self reflection when their children do not perform well in academics, sports, music, etc. The excuses they make publicly are indicative of the pain they feel privately. Do not feel sorry for them. Let the pain be a catalyst for improving the parenting skills of some percentage of them. Do you think there are no tortured souls behind many of our prison inmates and juvenile delinquents? Do we need a social program to relieve their guilt? No. Suffering natural and logical consequences for our actions has its own lessons.

Yes, it does

Excellent post, Bytheway. I think another factor that deserves consideration is the ability of a school administrator or teacher to hold a student back when they are failing a grade or class. This is particularly relevant to grade school students. Currently, a school cannot hold a student back from advancing to the next grade without the agreement of the parent(s). This is wrong. I have friends who graduated from high school that read at less than a 4th grade level. In doing so, we are doing a disservice to our students and our communities. Maybe Europe has the best approach: testing to move into secondary school (HS); testing to advance to university. Failure at any point relegates the student to be enrolled in a trade school instead of schools of higher learning. Maybe that is the incentive we need to get students to improve, parents to become more involved, and teachers to succeed.

I agree with you on much of your post

just to clarify...I'm not blaming parents, I'm just saying that their part in student performance should be factored in.

Pay for Performance

While I oppose Luna's corporate driven strong-arm tactics, I am in favor of pay for performance. The issue is how do you measure it? Teaching to a computer based test isn't the answer. The stakeholders need to be not only involved, but bought in. This is where Luna has failed...

PU

He tried

To bring them in last year and teachers union reacted in a predictable manner. Everybody, teachers and union officials screamed and cried.

Drako

Measurement

Then how should it be measured....education is a hard "thing" to measure because, unlike the business model, there is no real product produced. So which ridiculous test should be used to measure it? Teachers will end up teaching to the test and TA-DA, there goes innovation and real learning.

Measurement

If I were in charge of teaching fellow employees how to run a piece of equipment, believe me my boss would measure how good I did. Let’s say you teach math and 80% of your students fail a standard math test. Seems to me that would be a good measurement of how you teach.
Sounds like it would be pretty easy to measure how good a teacher is by how the students turn out.

Your answer shows the misunderstanding that most have

regarding education. Such measures are not so easy due to the sheer amount of variables in the equation. People are not standard; differences in socio economics, personal psychology and physiology, and educational environments hinder any type of 'standard' testing that is valid across all populations. Measuring performance in most of corporate America is also not easy. In most cases, except where there is a clearly definable output or metric, most evaluations by HR departments end up being based on the impressions of those around the reviewee, and not on actual performance. To achieve a valid metric, especially in a complex environment or situation, is very difficult. And sometimes even when the metric is valid, the effort to collect and doc*ment data can be cost or time prohibitive.

"No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government." Neil Peart

easy to measure

After reading your comment you are right. Measuring employee’s performance is not always easy. However this is what people working in the "real" world have to deal with every day. How many good employees have lost a job just because their boss did not like them? It is something most people deal with their entire life. Is it a completely fair system; of course not.

But there has to be some type of measurement on if you are doing your job or not even if it is not perfect. And saying you have a great teacher’s education and have been a teacher for years does not mean you are a good teacher.