Indiana State Department of Education – Where is the Evidence?


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The proposed evaluation of teachers in the State of Indiana continues to be the mantra of Dr. Tony Bennett, State Superintendent.  What Dr. Bennett continues to fail to realize is that evaluations are results-focused and only improved method will improve education.

Dr. Bennett has provided no evidence that his assumptions around evaluations to improving education exist.  In fact, we should be more concerned that all these evaluations will require more administration, inspection, monitoring, legislation, etc. . . . it becomes another unfunded mandate from a department that shouldn’t even exist.

Instead, closing down the Indiana State Department of Education would allow schools to pay teachers more and allow schools to have local control.  We are not in need of more bureaucracy in a State that has to lease toll roads to show a favorable budget.  We are in need of smarter money being spent where education takes place . . . in the classroom.

Adding evaluation programs and setting new standards, as seems to be done monthly, does not help our children become better learners.  The education system will continue to operate the same way until our educators experiment with teaching methods – or when manipulated to achieve targets or avoid punishment.  It is the latter that will create more costs and funnel needed classroom money to administration.

We should be in favor of bold reform in Indiana, but that reform should be the elimination of the Indiana State Department of Education.

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Tripp Babbitt is a columist (Quality Digest and IQPC), speaker, and consultant to private and public service industry.

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