Yes to the evaluation of learning activity, but without the risk of the school being corporatised

The Minister of Education signs the guideline for 2022, to “strengthen the evaluation system of schools, school managers and teachers” and introduce systematic mechanisms for the evaluation of work in the individual educational institutions.
There is also the reaction of teachers: according to statistics, 7 out of 10 are against the evaluation of teachers.

The National Evaluation System (SVN) is developed on three dimensions: the evaluation of school institutes, the evaluation of school management and the increase of the professional merit of teachers. In particular, the evaluation committee, together with the teacher, decides whether or not to confirm the role of a newly hired teacher at the end of the probationary year.
However, there is no right way to assess a teacher’s activity during his or her career.
There are internal rankings for permanent teachers, while for precarious teachers the provincial and institute rankings allow you to have priority in the selection of the school place. In both cases, the main requirement to be included in the rankings, seniority, is certainly a dubious criterion, since it in no way takes into account the quality of the teacher’s contribution.

There is no doubt that it is essential to verify that those who take the path to becoming a teacher have the right skills and the right motivation, especially in view of the complexity of the role.
Learning is a complex mission.
The teacher must be able to empathize, be impartial and judgmental, must know how to listen, educate, correct without humiliating, must have the ability to identify and understand the incredible variety of sensitivities.
The responsibility is very high.
The difficult social situation increases the inconvenience and makes the young people more fragile. The percentage of suicides at school age last year is remarkable. There are also less pronounced critical situations that also deserve attention.

The question is delicate.

Now, the recently hypothesized evaluation mechanism certainly seems to be a step forward in ensuring an innovative and balanced school system, in adapting to the strategies already in place in many other European countries.
The profiles that need to be considered, however, are basically two: on the one hand you the need to ensure that schools and their staff respect the standards of efficiency and adequacy;; on the other, that of avoid that the evaluation results in a control that harms the autonomy of the institution and in particular the scientific and cultural freedom of the subject, which is invested with educational functions.

As far as teaching staff is concerned, attention is paid to professional competencies, but also to relational ones, in order to enhance the aptitude for students’ cultural specifics and their character traits. For the purpose of a judgment that is as rational as possible, it is also necessary to examine the ability of the teacher in Itinere to interact with colleagues with proven experience, to cover the ability for roles in the service of good functioning of the pedagogical institution, the will to pursue a pedagogical path without setback, the diligent participation in the collegiate bodies, the drive to promote innovative activities, while respecting the virtuous tradition of the Italian school.

It would also be appropriate:
– to set up commissions with the task of assessing the psychological and motivational profiles of teachers, to identify in advance the appropriate methods, both to prevent the evaluation of formalistic bottlenecks from being overturned, with prejudices of all Flexibility and with excessive stiffness;
– guarantee Impartiality and objectivity of the evaluationensures that the composition of the commissions concerns the teaching staff externally to that of the institution to which the examiner belongs, of the parents and students elected by the lottery;
– fostering dialogue between teachers and parents, including the great change in the relationships between parents, students and teachers in recent years;
– enable and encourage students to critique and reflect on themselves through the practice of self-assessment and self-assessment, and encourage classroom discussions between students and teachers to improve excellence and increase shortcomings.
At the heart of every training path is the student, the protagonist of a project in which he can never be the object of indoctrination, but a subject that is challenged to improve a personality that is articulated and composed in itself. If this is the case, the main interviewer, for the purpose of a correct assessment, is exactly the recipient of the test person’s learning. From this point of view, it would be desirable to increase the computer systems for anonymous assessment of the teaching and the responsible of the didactic activities.

It should not be an inquisitorial systembut of a useful tool for better directing education offerings and promoting continuous education, above all risk that the school becomes more corporatized.
A new opportunity for growth and awareness, therefore.

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Source: Yes to the evaluation of learning activity, but without the risk of the corporatization of the school

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