I am one of those teachers who also rated ineffective last year with the majority of my students scoring mastery and advanced. I have about 25 years of teaching experience, a master’s degree plus about 39 additional college hours of credit. I have been praised for being an excellent eighth-grade teacher of gifted English by students, parents and administrators here at my school, Caddo Middle Magnet School, in Shreveport. Many parents of seventh-graders even request to have me as the teacher of their child. The high school teachers tell me, “We want to get your students because they know how to write!”
Labeling me as ineffective is like branding me with a scarlet letter professionally, and I have to say, it has come as one of the most devastating blows I have ever received. I always heard, “No one can take your education away from you.” I feel as if that is what is being done to me.
I have contributed to society by preparing many students for high school and college, and this is what I get?
I have three more years to go to get to my 2 ½ percent level of retirement (this year and two more). Sadly, this is just enough to knock me (a widow) out of this and make me have to take 38 percent of my salary instead of 50 percent. What a travesty! I know there are many others like me. I beseech the governor and Legislature to put in the provision that at least takes teachers of the gifted outside the VAM formula, or many “babies will be thrown out with the bath water.”