YOUR OPINION – Scranton Times

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Evaluate teachers,

but mend flaws

Editor: A Times-Tribune editorial (Our Opinion “Fairly Weight Test Results,” Aug. 26) upheld regulating students’ scores to weigh teachers; that is, a value-added model.

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan authorised states to check regulating VAMs. New York stopped; others are in progress. Our state law requires them.

Based on investigate and veteran opinion, fill-in-the-bubble mixed choice tests magnitude lots of stuff, though not a peculiarity of teachers.

Edward Haertel of a Educational Testing Service found they simulate a brew of students, not teaching. A RAND investigate and a Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development contend a test, not a teacher, causes differences. The American Statistical Association sees VAMs as “fraught with error.”

The house on contrast and comment of a National Research Council says VAMs “don’t work.” The American Federation of Teachers sees a emplacement on contrast as a smirch in how we proceed education. The National Education Association suggests that we consider factors that impact on training and that are within a teacher’s control.

Teachers have helped rise authentic systems in Massachusetts, Ohio, New York, California and Washington. The New Haven, Connecticut, complement withholds raises, though offers veteran development. Teachers who do not urge leave.

Tests slight curriculum. They incentivize training to a test, a problem for a 70 percent of teachers who do not learn simple skills. VAMs harm teachers who work with kids from poverty, with disabilities, and for whom English is not a initial denunciation — those who are not expected to do good on tests.

Building authentic measures takes time and it is expensive, though if we unequivocally wish to weigh teachers, we need to do it right.





Gas taxation truth

Editor: None of us enjoys profitable a taxation on gasoline, though it is required to amass income to say Pennsylvania roads and bridges.

At slightest that is a theory. Under Gov. Ed Rendell and Revenue Secretary Tom Wolf, a gas taxation was used for many purposes, though upkeep of roads and bridges was not really high on a list and a roads and bridges have run-down over a final 10 years to a indicate a reserve is in danger.

Mr. Wolf, a Democratic hopeful for governor, walked divided from his responsibilities to assure Pennsylvanians protected roads and bridges. Why would we trust that he would do anything opposite today?

He asserts that Gov. Tom Corbett lifted a gas taxation by 28 cents a gallon. Let’s take a demeanour during that.

The travel appropriation legislation — upheld with bipartisan legislative support — eliminates a 12-cent gas taxation paid by consumers during a pump.

If we’re personification along with a 28 cents number, it would have to be divided by 5 — given a taxation increases over 5 years — to see how most it rises this year. That is about 5.5 cents.

If we concede a 12-cent gas taxation that was eliminated, a net in this year’s gas cost is 6.5 cents cheaper than it was.

Mr. Corbett exercised care by elucidate a critical reserve and mercantile growth issue. For putting Pennsylvania initial and demonstrating leadership, he is being attacked.

The gas taxation boost will cost a normal Pennsylvanian distant reduction than a costs of repairs and alignments on vehicles since of a bad condition of a roads that Rendell certified were in terrible shape.




Landfill tourism

Editor: Here’s a resolution that kills dual birds with a same stone.

The ask for increasing tallness during a Keystone Landfill in Dunmore and Throop should be authorized usually if a rubbish is shaped into a busts of internal jailed politicians.

Then, we can name it Mount Trashmore and move some-more tourists to a area.




Separate probe

Editor: There are many dots still not connected in a meaningless murder of state military Cpl. Bryon Dickson and a wounding of Trooper Alex Douglass.

No matter what, a life mislaid is sad, generally for kids that have now turn fatherless.

There needs to be an eccentric investigation. There needs to be an answer as to a base means of a situation. If there are issues associated to personal lives, outward work or uniform, it contingency be looked during and a contribution should be brought to a public.

If a uncalled-for murder of Cpl. Dickson resulted from a personal vendetta, a media need to take a step behind and stop spiritless survivalists and stop reporting that a sharpened was destined during supervision and law enforcement.

We keep conference a think wanted to dedicate mass murder. How was this discovered? Show me a proof. Was it on amicable media? Was it created down? Or was it squabble out in promptness to paint a fake picture?

Dots are connecting, though many some-more need to be connected and once they do, we will find a base cause.

All we am seeking is to take a step back, take a low exhale and open your minds.




Bad ad location

Editor: On Page A5 of a Sept. 20 book of The Times-Tribune underneath a page heading, “Ambush,” adjacent to cinema of state troopers, an FBI most-wanted print and a design of a purported shooter of dual state troopers appears an announcement printed like an Old West wanted print for a steel thatch business.

Please assure me that was only a fluke and not an unresponsive ploy for an eye- throwing ad thrown in with a internal tragedy.

It roughly looks strategically placed, as if it were partial of an essay that no doubt would be a vast concentration among journal readers.



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