To standardize teacher evaluations, the State of Florida has adopted a protocol composed by researcher Robert Marzano and marketed through a company called “Learning Sciences International“. The Marzano protocol provides half of a teacher’s evaluation; the other half is based on standardized test scores.
I’ve heard enough anecdotes about how the Marzano protocol penalizes inquiry-driven science teaching to be convinced that it is a serious matter that requires immediate attention. As with any tool, the good or bad that the Marzano instrument does depends in part on the good sense (or lack thereof) of the evaluator – generally the Principal. One colleague who knows much more about this issue than I do said “Marzano isn’t single handedly responsible for killing inquiry, but Marzano is helping to hold the pillow down.”
So…I am asking you, gentle readers, to send me your Marzano science stories. Don’t send them to my FSU account, which is a public record. Instead, send them to firstname.lastname@example.org, an account I’ve established especially for this project. I will not post any stories (unless you specifically tell me that I can and/or should). I may, however, share them with colleagues who have a more scholarly or otherwise professional interest in Florida’s new teacher evaluation system.
The few stories I’ve collected so far include some real doozies. Tell me yours.