Teachers in Douglas County being used for higher ups profit.

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knowledge

Douglasville, GA

#1 Sep 12, 2011
Dr. Magouyrk, Rhonda Baldwin the professional development director and a consultant are making teachers in Douglas County implement a testing procedure right now instead of the state mandated date of 2014-2015. Why? Because they are going to write a book for their profit. This is a very time consuming tasj that other county's are going to take years to implement. This is taking time away from planning, time out of the classroom for training, unnecessary money being spent on this program that can go to other areas that are much needed.
new in town

Douglasville, GA

#2 Sep 12, 2011
no idea what you are talking about

Since: Feb 08

Douglasville, Georgia

#3 Sep 12, 2011
knowledge wrote:
Dr. Magouyrk, Rhonda Baldwin the professional development director and a consultant are making teachers in Douglas County implement a testing procedure right now instead of the state mandated date of 2014-2015. Why? Because they are going to write a book for their profit. This is a very time consuming tasj that other county's are going to take years to implement. This is taking time away from planning, time out of the classroom for training, unnecessary money being spent on this program that can go to other areas that are much needed.
What exactly is the testing procedure they are attempting to implement early?

Since: Aug 09

Villa Rica

#4 Sep 12, 2011
We talking about ThinkGate?
DCSS padre

Plainview, AR

#5 Sep 13, 2011
Where exactly are you getting your information? If you are going to suggest something like this, please elaborate with sources.
THinkgate

Douglasville, GA

#6 Sep 13, 2011
Awww all this fuss over little ol me? Its true that I'm invading all the schools and taking up LOTS of time, but I'll be worth it in the end! I mean, with all of those quality tests that are worth a mandatory 20% of a student's grade ... I better be worth the crazy amount of money they are paying for me!

Since: Feb 08

Douglasville, Georgia

#7 Sep 13, 2011
THinkgate wrote:
Awww all this fuss over little ol me? Its true that I'm invading all the schools and taking up LOTS of time, but I'll be worth it in the end! I mean, with all of those quality tests that are worth a mandatory 20% of a student's grade ... I better be worth the crazy amount of money they are paying for me!
At least until the next greatest thing that is touted to solve education's problems comes down the pike, and then it starts all over again.
Common District Assessmen

Douglasville, GA

#8 Sep 13, 2011
NO way TG, they are mad about me, but I heard that rumor about "the book" too. THey are trying to publish their "findings" about how much testing kids more will improve education. Didn't we just go that route with NCLB for 10 years, and it DIDN'T WORK. Oh, well. AT least they "trimmed the fat" by firing the fat cats making the big money and not doing anything at the county office. Oh, wait they hired the academic coaches back with new titles (and new salaries). So, we got rid of the do-nothing men, and traded them for the micro-managing women. Don't worry knowledge, we all know these things change as the wind blows, or the funding dries up.
teacher

Cumming, GA

#9 Sep 14, 2011
There are so many new paper intensive programs being rolled out that that you can't keep them straight. There are the District Common Assessments, Thinkgate, Aimsweb,all the regular special ed testing; testing for every and all reasons. Testing that takes hundreds of thousands of copies and hours of time to make those hundreds of thousands of copies and hundreds of hours of in service to learn HOW to give the tests and how to score them and how to interpret them. And in between getting ready for the tests and giving the tests and scoring the tests --use those few minutes to do hours of planning with the new Focus on Learning roll out that you BETTER do. But hey - it's a job, so teachers will ask how high?? when the higher ups say jump. They will also do their best to try to teach the little darlins in the few remaining nontesting minutes. Hey --hope that book turns out well - think we could share the royalties since the teachers are doing your work for you????
I know

Douglasville, GA

#10 Sep 14, 2011
If the book rumor is a fact, Magouyrk and Baldwin should be immediately fired for conflict of interest: their motivation is NOT student achievement. Any poor teacher that sat through the fiasco of training to write common district assesments will tell you that there is something rotten in the county office. No fiscally responsible sane person would have paid that trainer. Thinkgate is a joke. We were told to provide a variety of assessments, but the program is so limited that it only grades multiple choice tests. ALL THE DATA SHOWS THAT THE BEST WAY FOR KIDS TO LEARN IS THROUGH WRITING. MATH, ENGLISH, SCIENCE AND SOCIAL STUDIES SCORES IMPROVE BY WRITING ESSAYS. So what does our county do? We spend hundreds of thousands of dollars for teachers to create tests for a program that only works well for multiple choice questions. How do we clean house?
My Opinion

Douglasville, GA

#11 Sep 15, 2011
Too many changes at the county office, and the Dr. in control is going in several different directions at once. Instead of implementing one or two changes and doing them well, she is implementing about six. Wait until you have to do Aimsweb. Every teacher I know is stressed to the breaking point. People are calling Carroll and Paulding and looking to get out of teaching. Watch how many good teachers retire this year or leave this county. Even the people who usually get on board with innovations are saying to just nod and pretend. It is because the work load is impossible. I'm so busy I'm taking a break from schoolwork and it is four in the morning.
I know

Douglasville, GA

#12 Sep 15, 2011
You are certainly right about the money that is being spent on these programs. Each new CDA needs to be copied for each class. Then answer documents have to be copied for each student. All of this is on top of the exorbitant price we paid for the thinkgate program. Why are we spending money on this? Has anyone from the county office been in any of the high schools lately?

Since: Feb 08

Douglasville, Georgia

#13 Sep 15, 2011
All I have ever heard from administration is watch those copy numbers....keep them down...you are only alloted a case of papers for the whole year, etc.

How is this being justified regarding the copies????

Since: Aug 09

Villa Rica

#14 Sep 15, 2011
elementaryhistoryteacher wrote:
All I have ever heard from administration is watch those copy numbers....keep them down...you are only alloted a case of papers for the whole year, etc.
How is this being justified regarding the copies????
Teachers are still expected to keep to their allotments. And yeah, some principals even.say that with a straight face.
Mom

Atlanta, GA

#15 Sep 15, 2011
I am very concerned about what the CDA will do to my student's GPA. He tells me that they must count for 20% of his grade, even though they are test designed by someone other than his teacher. He took one this week in an AP class and it had no connection to what they had learned so far. I don't understand this--who decided that someone in the county office should design an exam that counts for 20% of my child's grade--when that person has not been present to see what my child is learning? How is this reasonable assessment?

Can anyone tell me, who made this decision? How can I fix it? Should I go to a board meeting? Is this Dr. Pritz? It just sounds like craziness. What a waste of time and resources, as well as additional stress on the students. More testing--really? What is the point?
teacher

Cumming, GA

#16 Sep 15, 2011
I understand there was a fairly contentious principal's meeting this week. Also understand that Dr. M. has absolutely NO sympathy with the time expended on paperwork - just do it!!
The CO personnel are real quick to point out that they are just concerned with improving learning. I'm not sure exactly how that happens when morale is at a VERY low point in the system, people are at each other's throats, there is intrigue going on at CO, school staff feels totally underwater with trying to keep up with the paperwork. If you want to keep your job in the system, you just grit your teeth, close your door and do what you can.
Common District Assessmen

Douglasville, GA

#17 Sep 15, 2011
Yep, you better count me 20% and DO NOT CURVE my grade to be fair for the students!
Douglas Co Teacher

Lithia Springs, GA

#18 Sep 15, 2011
I was part of the assessment design team this summer, and when I asked if these Common District Assessments would count, I was told that at most, they would count as a test grade.
A test is not necessarily valid the first time it is administered, so to count the CDAs 20% is absurd!
You can bet I won't allow low CDA grades affect my students' GPAs - I'll add points on at the end of the grading period...

Since: Feb 08

Douglasville, Georgia

#19 Sep 15, 2011
Hmmmmm....sounds like I need to write a column regarding all of this at Patch soon instead of the normal history stuff I cover.

What are parents saying about all of this?
Parent of HS student

Douglasville, GA

#20 Sep 16, 2011
I am furious. My daughter, a senior, made a 1250 on her SAT and has always made A's. Even her EOCT scores were never below an 88, but she has failed ALL of her county tests. I emailed her teachers because she has C's, D's and F's. They said there's nothing they can do. The teachers seemed as frustrated with all this as I am. Who can I call at the County Office? Should we picket or call the news? If this keeps up she won't get the HOPE money because her GPA will be wrecked. Why are we punishing the kids with this?

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