Sunday, May 25, 2014

VAMalot!--the Arne Duncan Musical

More and more statisticians and studies are proving what most career teachers knew from the get-go:  VAM is a SHAM (see here for example).  Still, Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, clings to it like a captain aboard a ship which is sure to sink.  

Sadly, the UFT enshrined test-based teacher evaluations in its new contract.  Yes, teachers in non-tested areas will be evaluated only on the test scores of their students, but in subjects which they do not teach.  And, the DOE has promised to create more standardized tests for non-assessed areas.  More tests?  Is it Pearson Envy?  Is it some form of OCD or an expensive habit of pandering to yet more standardized tests?

In honor of VAM's eventual demise, here is a new version of "Camelot, the Reprise": 

Each evening, from September to September,
Before you drift to sleep upon your cot,
Think back on all the tests that you remember
Of VAMalot.
Ask ev'ry person if he's heard the story,
And tell it strong and clear if he has not,
That once there was a fleeting wisp of glory
Called VAMalot.
VAMalot! VAMalot!
Now say it out with pride and joy!

VAMalot! VAMalot!

Yes, VAMalot, my boy!
Where once we always prepped till after sundown,
By eight a.m. the morning class had moaned ...
Don't let it be forgot
That once there was a spot
For one brief shining moment that was known
As VAMalot.
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