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A teacher’s view on the Johnston bill

Kerrie Dallman is president of the Jefferson County Education Association, the teachers union in the state’s largest school district.

She also is a member of the Governor’s Council on Educator Effectiveness, created by executive order of Gov. Bill Ritter to overhaul the state’s teacher and principal evaluation system by 2012-13.

The group is to define what makes an effective teacher and principal and link at least 50 percent of their evaluations to measures of student achievement.

Dallman, a high school government teacher, opposes a bill introduced by state Sen. Mike Johnston, D-Denver, which also requires that link between student academic growth and decisions about teacher pay, retention and dismissal.

Whether through the governor’s council or the Johnston bill, “We’re going to make that link,” Dallman said, “but it’s how we make that link.”

Johnston’s bill, Senate Bill 191, also would require teachers receive three consecutive years of positive evaluations to earn tenure and they could be returned to probationary status if they receive two years of poor ratings.

Education News Colorado sat down with Dallman to talk specifics about teachers’ concerns with the bill, which has the support of the State Board of Education and state Education Commissioner Dwight Jones but is opposed by the Colorado Education Association, the statewide teachers’ union.

Dallman testified against the bill Thursday. She was interviewed Monday.

Click below to hear Dallman talk about the difficulty of defining effective teaching and why it takes time:

Dallman talks about concerns with the current educator evaluation system and why it’s not working:

Dallman talks about linking student achievement to decisions about teacher pay, retention and dismissal:

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