Vanderbilt's Ed School Report Card

This is exactly the sort of report card we hope to get for our teacher prep program. In Tennessee, they now evaluate schools of education based on the test scores of the kids taught by alumni. For example, this is Vanderbilt's Ed School report card.

Of the 8 middle school math teachers Vandy trained, 4 were standouts (top 20% in the state). That's great.

Of the 7 middle school science teachers they trained, 3 were top 20% standouts. Also great.

Overall, the 15 significantly outperformed other Tennessee teachers.

The Commodores did worse with their 11 reading teachers, though. They were average.

Sample size? Very small. You'd wouldn't be surprised to find high year-to-year volatility with a group this small. We shall see.

If the pattern continued, though, we'd expect the Vandy faculty to examine: Why? Is it the approach, the concepts of "how to teach"? Is it the skill of the professors who train the math and science teachers? Is it something about the admission process?

Hopefully, if each Ed School makes these inquiries transparent, and ultimately manages to bolster performance of their alumni, then all teacher prep programs would benefit.

Of note: among the handful of Vandy-trained rookies who were in the lowest 20% -- all passed "Praxis." (We know b/c all 100+ teachers they trained in this cohort passed Praxis).

Praxis is a teacher test administered by the College Board; many states use it as a condition for licensure (Massachusetts has its own tests, called MTEL). Studies have shown that passing this test is not highly correlated to teacher performance.

Which was the top-performing Ed School on these report cards? Actually, it wasn't an Ed School -- it was Teach For America. Here is their report card.

Disclosure: one of the MATCH Teacher Residency donors is a Vanderbilt trustee.