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In It to Win It

(8,476 posts)
Fri Sep 1, 2023, 01:33 PM Sep 2023

Judge blocks changes in teacher evaluations prompted by Texas' takeover of Houston school district [View all]

Judge blocks changes in teacher evaluations prompted by Texas' takeover of Houston school district


HOUSTON (AP) — A judge on Thursday granted a request by a teachers union in Texas' largest school district to temporarily block a new system to evaluate educators that's being implemented following a state takeover.

The order comes days after the Houston school district began its first school year under a contentious takeover that replaced its superintendent and board of trustees. It also follows rare public comments on the takeover by Texas Education Commissioner Mike Morath since he announced it in March.

One of the changes being put in place by new superintendent Mike Miles is a new teacher evaluation system that will pay educators based largely on standardized test scores and their classroom performance.

In its lawsuit, filed Wednesday in state district court, the Houston Federation of Teachers alleges the new system was approved without input from teachers and school committees, a violation of state law. The union says the new evaluation system will pit teachers against each other and not foster an environment of collaboration and improvement.

Following a court hearing Thursday, state district judge Fredericka Phillips issued the temporary restraining order, preliminarily finding that the new evaluation system was not developed under state law. A hearing to discuss whether the evaluation system would be put on hold until a trial is held was set for Sept. 11.

“Teachers at HISD do not have a problem with being evaluated. ... We just want to know that we’re going to be evaluated by a system where we know what the expectation is and what the criteria is,” union president Jackie Anderson said after Thursday's court hearing.
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