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You are surely familiar with Sheri Lederman. She is a fourth-grade teacher in Great Neck, Long Island, New York, whose “growth” scores dropped inexplicably from 14 of 20 to only 1 of 20 in a single year, causing her to be labeled “ineffective” on that measure. The score was assigned by a computer, which compared the growth of students in her class to avatar students in other parts of the state. The assumption is that children are inanimate objects that can be shaped and compelled to increase their standardized test scores. The computer is, in this case, at odds with Sheri’s principal, superintendent, parents, and former students.
Sheri’s husband Bruce Lederman is a lawyer. They decided not to accept this slap in the face to a teacher who had served with distinction for nearly 20 years. Bruce sued and the case was recently heard in state supreme court in Albany.
Here is a video about the case. Meet Sheri and Bruce, who are fighting for teachers across the state and the nation. The best part is the clip where Governor Andrew Cuomo declares his unqualified faith in using test scores to judge teachers and his belief that students will get a better education (or higher test scores) if teachers compete in a market.
This case is of national significance. It is a powerful weapon in the battle to restore humanity to teachers’ workplace.