Head teachers lose jobs due to poor results In the UK, teachers lost their jobs last year because of poor exam results and school closures, the leader of a union has said. He links the increase to...

Head teachers lose jobs due to poor results

In the UK, teachers lost their jobs last year because of poor exam results and school closures, the leader of a union has said.

He links the increase to schools federating and becoming academies and to intense pressure over poor results and predicts more would go because of new complaints procedures where parents are being given a right of complaint over schools to the local government ombudsman in a government bill currently going through Parliament.

Do you think something like this can happen here in the U.S?


Expert Answers
mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In small towns the interference of parents of social standing causes prinicpals great trepidation.  The school board caters to these people, the teachers are in fear of giving their little darlings the poor grade that they deserve, etc. etc.

As most studies have shown, teachers do not reach their potential until at least their fifth year.  By this time, many of them have been pink-slipped because of poor tests scores, unpopularity with the parents, or so other reason.  Then, they are replaced by equally inexperienced teachers and the process begins again.  In one high school in my area, the politico principal rolled enough heads that most of the faculty had turned over.  Now, the school cannot reach state requirements.  One of the veteran teachers who has an excellent reputation with the community said that she was maligned horribly for her first years, but was retained because it was so difficult to find another in her field.  How many potentially great teachers have parents and the shivering, pusillanimous administrations run off nowadays?Somehow there are crass people who think that education operates like a retail stories and the "customers [parents] are king."  I wonder if they would like teachers to come to their jobs and complain that they are not producing?

M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It is already happening! It is called "giving the pink slip" to teachers. Public schools depend on government funding and the government funding comes from specific budgets that, ultimately, serve to reflect on the area senator, representative, school board, councilman, and whoever else is involved in the process of approving the budget. When No Child Left Behind began to take place, standardized testing became the ultimate measurement tool for knowledge. We know that no such tool ever measured knowledge entirely, but certainly the results clearly began to reflect on some school districts. To me, personally, it was about time someone got told in the face YOUR SCHOOL ISN'T DOING ITS JOB! The problem is that the implementation of NCLB made us more scared than useful. And, yes, some schools either shut down or switched completely due to these results.

job518 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think we are definitely headed in this direction. I say we should be VERY cautious. I completely agree that there are several teachers that do not need to be teaching, but we will get ourselves into a bigger mess when we allow the parents to have a major influence. Yes, we really should monitor our teachers and student progress more closely, but using test scores only is a little harsh. We need to look at progress not just results. Even if a school has been considered failing, they could still be making progress.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Totally agree with post 4.  I haven't paid really close attention to the RI thing, but I read that all the teachers there get to reapply for their jobs.  That seems okay to me -- if you're good, you should be able to stay on, and firing everyone gives a chance to get rid of the bad ones.

We need some way to get rid of bad teachers, but we also need some way to objectively measure who the bad ones are.


besure77 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There are some "not so good" teachers out there who are still teaching because they are tenured and they really need to be replaced with caring teachers who truly care about students.

I do not think that standardized tests should be the only determining factor. Like post #4 stated, progress is what is important. Results can't be expected overnight.

bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It just happened to a whole school of teachers in Rhode Island, where the low graduation rates of the school prompted officials to fire the entire faculty, effective at the end of the school year. In Florida, FCAT scores are very important. Schools with repeated "F" scores usually find their principals fired of reassigned. Teacher firings may come next.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator
Yes, this could happen in the US. We are already headed in this direction. Entire schools have been shut down or had the entire staff transferred or fired due to poor test scores. This means that even if your scores are not bad, you can lose your job because others are.
lrwilliams eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I agree that bad teachers need to be gone. I think though that we need to look at alot more than just how students do on a Standardized Test to determine the effectiveness of a teacher.

krishna-agrawala | Student

I do not know the situation in the USA, but I can give some information on the scenario in India.

Many schools judge the performance of teachers based on grades of students in independent exams conducted. And decisions on continued employment of teachers id definitely influenced by this.

Further, I believe that learning of students is definitely the most important consideration for evaluating performance of students. And as long a exams are used a the primary means to ascertain student learning, the performance of students in exams appears to be the most logical choice of measure of a teacher's performance.

Anther point made in the first post is about teachers losing jobs because of closure of schools. I do not see a school continue to employ teachers when the school; itself ceases to exist.