Court asked to mull teacher evaluation plan

Created: 12/23/2013 7:48 AM
By: Erica Zucco, KOB Eyewitness News 4

The fight over New Mexico's new rules for teacher evaluations has teachers, parents and students weighing in. Last week, KOB Eyewitness reported on how students planned to protest tests by answering "D" to every question.

Now, the spotlight is back on the state's teachers union and their petition to have a judge delay the new requirements. A district court judge dismissed that petition last month. Now, the union wants the state's Court of Appeals to reconsider.

The judge ruled the state has the right to set new requirements, but the teachers union claims that's not what they were asking the court to rule on. They say it's about whether the new requirements conflict with existing law.

Under the new plan, half of a teacher's evaluation is based on "growth in student achievement," a quarter comes from observation of their teaching, and a quarter varies from district to district.

The union takes issue with the new plan letting teachers do the observation portion for other teachers. They also take issue with some exemptions for charter schools.

The Public Education Department maintains that the judge made their ruling, and says this appeal, which could take 8-12 months, is a waste of time and money that should be spent directly on students.

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