Is Delaware setting the stage for parents to view teacher performance ratings?

Parent Choice Portal Project
Analysis, Design, and Development
RFP # 2014-05

1.2. Project Overview
The purpose of the Parent Choice Portal is to empower parents to make more informed decisions about where to send their children to school and provide them with an accessible and easy-to-navigate tool for participating in School Choice. By increasing transparency around the quality of our schools and engaging more parents in School Choice, the State believes it can exert public pressure on our schools and districts so that there is greater accountability for improved outcomes for Delaware’s students. The information supplied to stakeholders through the Parent Choice Portal will be derived from the comprehensive longitudinal data sets maintained by DDOE, supplemented by
data supplied by human service, workforce and higher education partner organizations in Delaware.
The primary goals of this effort are as follows:
 Provide parents with the information they need to make informed decisions
about where to send their children to school
 Illuminate the comparative strengths of our schools as well as opportunities
for improvement
 Streamline school choice by providing parents with the opportunity to use a
state portal to initiate the school choice process
A parent should be able to use this system to understand how well a school fits the needs of their child – whether academic, extracurricular, or otherwise – and initiate the process of applying to that school.
A school should be able to use this system to market their unique strengths, while also understanding their attractiveness to parents in the context of similar schools within Delaware.

It appears Delaware is setting the stage for parents to view teacher performance ratings online. As many know DEEDS is available but only displays teachers credentials. As far as rating schools to make an informed decision Delaware already has the school profile dashboard that even includes the individual school’s discipline profile and much more.

Some teachers feel parents don’t have the right to know their teacher performance ratings. But this RFP is setting the stage! Just think opting out of state student test could be a possibility! So why not demanding your child not be place in teacher with bottom of the barrel ratings? Do I agree with all of this? Irrelevant! A day “will” come where parent will had such access to make that “informed decision.” The technological building blocks to do so are lining up. 

Yea yea I know Kilroy is a crack-pot! He yelled the sky is falling with Race to The Top, Common Core Standards and The Smarter Balanced Assessment! But that all proved to be a lie! Right?

7 responses to “Is Delaware setting the stage for parents to view teacher performance ratings?

  1. Or, it’s a way for parents to say “my feeder school is underperforming and I’m send them to charter”


    • I participated a few weeks ago in a pilot test of this portal–or of one designed for our DOE by, if this is the same thing. The school rankings (1-10 overall score) are based heavily on test scores–perhaps entirely, though the young man from the greatschools organization who was working with me on the pilot didn’t know how the score was determined! No weighting of school test scores in relation to demographic factors that are strongly correlated with low scores, such as family incomes or % of special needs kids. In Newark and Wilm. (the only geog. areas where I have some knowledge of school demographics), overall scores were entirely predictable, e.g.Newark Charter a 10, Downes an 8, W. Park a 7 (all green dots on the map), Schue and Newark HS a 6 (yellow dots), Brookside lower than anything around it (poorer student population than any around it). All Wilm. district schools that I looked at showed up on the map as red dots, meaning overall scores of 1-3 (or to translate, low-income student populations above 80%–and majority black or Latino children). I asked whether schools receive any “points” for serving a diverse student population, or a student population profile that closely mirrors that of children in their neighborhood–and whether parents could search with this criterion in mind. The young man seemed taken aback by this question (who would want to “choice” on that basis?).


    • kilroysdelaware

      We already have online school and district profiles and notation of AYP. Also, parents and the public has access to assessment results of the schools and districts by grade. As far as using test scores tying the Smarter Balanced Test schools with district assessments will be skewed. District use various assessment tools and test.

      Giving parents the ability to better rate their schools doesn’t address school choice whereas many popular schools are closed to choice due to maxing out available seat. The notion parents/ students can chose their schools via choice is a little distorted.

      No matter what, the students who struggle the most often have parents who are not engage and don’t give a rat’s ass.


  2. Under Delaware law Poor parents are denied choice, so in RC choice is approved for other district students while RC children remain in failing schools.
    How do we rate school boards on allocation of resources or administrators?


  3. From the RFP:

    The list was then narrowed down to a series of priority data elements that reflect the project team’s best assessment of “minimum” data requirements that should be incorporated in some capacity in the design of the Parent Choice Portal. DDOE accepts that this list is not exhaustive and may continue to evolve during the design phase of this project. DDOE expects that vendors will seek the input and feedback of parent groups during the design phase of the project, and validate these data requirements where necessary while suggesting revisions. modifications, and additions as appropriate.

    I guess now I have to go find out if this RFP was ever awarded and if so, how far along is the vendor. Remember this thing is supposed to by up and running by August, so what happened to the parent input? Did it ever happen?


  4. DOE was supposed to have a grand workshop for stakeholders to identify and develop the metrics used for the Insight project itself. Notably, no parents were invited. Worse, the workshop was cancelled, and was replaced with less ambitious “feedback workshops.” The result was the existing Ed-Fi metrics were rubber-stamped, and the resulting Insight project, while a technical success, doesn’t really provide any useful new data views – especially considering the potential of what might have been accomplished with that kind of tachnology. Those are the underlying metrics that the new choice portal will be looking at.