Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Eterno Chronicles Regent Grading Fiasco at ICE Blog

I assume you are aware of the Regents grading mess where because teachers cannot be trusted to mark their own kids' exams, they are sent to detention
grading centers to mark exams of kids from other schools. Or maybe their own since you can't tell anyway. But the DOE needed to toss some money McGraw Hills' way so first exams are sent to Connecticut to be scanned and posted on the internet -- which by the way, teachers could actually access from their own schools. But why quibble.

NYC Educator had his usual funny take.
Thank goodness we have Meryl Tisch making policy for us. In the old days, we would have students taking Regents exams, and kids would give the exams to their teachers. Then, the teachers would grade them. This was a terrible system. First of all, no technology was involved. Secondly, no corporations made money from this. And worst of all, every single teacher in the world is a lying, worthless, conniving. self-serving fraud who cares about nothing but appearance.

Because of this, we now have a far better system. First of all, we've paid McGraw-Hill 9.6 million bucks to scan all the tests. That's a huge improvement. Not only have we given a corporation millions of dollars, but we've also managed to add the element of scanning thousands and thousands of papers. This, clearly, is highly effective, and that's what matters in King Reformy John's feifdom.
Read it all at: Ms. Tisch and the Brilliant Innovation

With so many bloggers out there covering ed issues in so much a better way than the mainstream ed press, I find less and less need to comment myself. I assume Ed Notes readers are checking the blog roll but in case you are missing some of them, here is a quick summary on the current hot button issue of Tweedie incoherence. Every time you see Walcott or Shael or any Tweedie talk their jive, just think of the almost daily fiascoes and laugh in their faces.

James has been doing a great job. Read in reverse order.
MORE has put out a statement:
Regents Scoring Debacle – Trouble for English Language Learners - The following is an op-ed written by MORE’s Joanna Yip about the effect of the Regents scoring problems on a particularly vulnerable population.

Other bloggers have chimed in:


94% Of Regents Exams Graded As Of 1 PM Monday

According to Gotham Schools, 6% of the city's Regents exams still need to be graded.
Tests are still being scanned by McGraw-Hill and teachers sat around the grading centers today with nothing to grade.

Wednesday is the last day of school.

I cannot remember a Regents exam grading season as chaotic as this one.

Will there be some accountability for the Tweedies who put this system into place and signed off on the contract with McGraw-Hill? 

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

All Documents Have Been Graded For This RIB

That's the message that teachers across the city have been getting when they access regents exams in a vain attempt to scores them for students.

Look, for three full days, we have have not been unable to access these exams because the private, for-profit company that has been asked to scan and present the exams to us for grading has not been able to do their job. We've sat in these rooms for this time accomplishing nothing (a particular pet peeve of mine) because our department struck a deal with some company that couldn't even deliver on their end of the bargain. This screw up is jeopardizing the graduation expectations of high school seniors all across the city and I'm sure that several hundred family vacations are currently hanging in the balance (with the potential for summer school still alive for many teens who would otherwise know their scores by now).

This whole time we at our schools (grading along the time honored tradition) would have been finished with this task, or would have been very close to finished, by now and none of this would be happening.

You see, we would have delivered, as we have for decades now. They didn't. 

And who will they turn to to fix their screw up? Why us, of course!

The DOE, as rumor would have it, has decided to offer us all per session (DOE-speak for overtime) on Thursday and Friday evenings -and all day on Saturday, as well as all day Sunday- to make up for this train wreck. Yep.

We're in this fiasco because the department had decided -astoundingly!- that it was us who could not be trusted to produce accurate results for our own students! That's right. They concocted this system as a way to keep us and our professional judgement at bay with regard to assessing our own students at our own schools. We're here because we weren't trusted to act as professionals. 

People who read this blog know that I really don't complain and I really don't gripe. Maybe I'll throw out the occasional piece of sarcasm, but wining isn't something I really do. But as you read the blogs and Ed. news sites tonight figuring out exactly what is causing this mess, and as you go into your grading 'hub' tomorrow wondering if it will continue for yet another day and wondering when you will find out how well your students performed on their* state tests  I'd like to you to remember just one thing:

We're here at these grading hubs experiencing this fiasco because they said that they could not trust us to be professional!
And ain't that a hoot!?


  1. The purported lack of trust is really an attempt at greater control and oversight over teachers. The system is called the McGraw CTB Evaluation (for the kids) and Monitoring (for the teachers) System.

    It's there to time us, to rate us as "easy" or "hard" graders, and to see if our grades are within the range given by other teachers, or if a disproportionate number of the exams we grade require a third reader.

    As always with the DOE, where does the incompetence end and the malice begin?

  2. I wish that I were surprised by the defense of teacher cheating on Ed Notes today. Norm, NYC Educator, and DOENUTS don’t exactly say that inflating Regents scores is okay. But their snarky remarks regarding the current mode of blind grading say the opposite.

    Every teacher-- and blogger--knows the real the story. “I’m sorry it’s shocking for laymen to hear. Scrubbing is something we do to help kids get their asses out of high school,” a Manhattan English teacher told the Post in 2004. (“Teachers Cheat,” January 26) Seven years later the Wall Street Journal reported that the crime spree was still operative: “A trio of economists… conducted an independent statistical analysis of the data for the Journal and came to a similar conclusion [as Columbia’s John Rockoff]. They estimated that from 3% to 5% of the students statewide who were given passing grades for the five main Regents exams in June 2009 actually failed the tests. In New York City, between 5% and 10% of students who passed actually failed, they estimated.” (Feb. 2, “Students’ Regents Test Scores Bulge at 65”)

    These undisputed percents, compounded over the years, represent thousands and thousands of mostly black and brown young people whom we have graduated with phony diplomas. What does that make us? Affirmative cheaters?

    Norm and DOENUTS: trust is not the issue, human nature is, particularly when the stakes fly high and higher.

    NYC Educator: your mockery overlooks the fact that just a few teachers in any given grading room, even one alone, can accomplish the dirty work as needed. And what about the rest who did nothing to stop or report what they saw?

    And Michael, my favorite and most admirable dissenter, the state and city have always trusted their administrators and teachers to pass just failing Regents exams by any means necessary. Blind grading was forced on the system after the devastating WSJ story on which Klein had no comment.

    We’re not West Pointers, but come on.

  3. Speaking of malice...it was kept very quiet (I wonder why), but a certain "whatever the spelling for the mafia adviser is" gave the keynote speech at a high school graduation today. They graduated from the school fifty years ago. Am I just too cynical to think it was not publicized or published anywhere on purpose? If you are wondering who I am talking about, think hacking.

  4. What is so interesting is that charter schools-even DOE run charter schools - were allowed to grade their own papers.

    1. What about all.the SS Regents exams that were lost and never found? And the kids who have to sit again this year to retake them? Shouldn't the NYSED have given them a pass or an exemption?


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