I noticed that recently the only positive feedback I was receiving from my instructional leader [at my school, I teach 7th grade English in Sylmar] was about my amazing ability to REFLECT on the areas I needed to improve. This has been an incredibly wearing strength of mine for the past two years. Usually, I’m doing some things right, as well. The administration’s attitude seemed to have shifted.
Recently, my students scored poorly on an internal district assessment (that should correlate to oh-so-significant state tests). I fudged with the data a bit to communicate to my students their areas for growth. I was using the data as “formative”: a way to plan for future instruction. Bad move on my part. I should have fudged the data in ways that made students look as successful as possible. The school took the data as summative, which meant their low score was potentially their final score.
I talked to my instructional leader about the critical eye I felt over my classroom. She admitted that the scores (and two other data points) did startle the administration. I like being right, but this sort of sucked (no academic language here). Sucked.
“Are you sure this is what you want to do?”
“Do no harm”
“Do you see the kids as little punks?”
“I have some articles on privilege you can read.”
I asked her if they had made a decision. She said no.
I have some decisions to make, though.
Last year and the year before, my scores (my students’ scores) were high. I even had a conversation with a higher-up in the district where he actually asked me, “How do you do it?”
We’ll show them on the next test.
My mom told me that I don’t have to believe the negative things she said about me. I’m not ready to be honest [to this blog] about everything she said. She even took some of it back. I feel like I’ve written too much already.