Performance Measures for Teachers and Teacher Education: Corporate Education Reform Opens the Door to New Legal Issues
Recent efforts to change the teaching profession and teacher preparation include a number of innovations to use portfolio assessment, value added measures (VAM), accountability metrics and other corporate education reform ideas. These approaches may provoke considerable potential legal consequences. Traditional constitutional and civil rights issues will continue to be important considerations. In addition, because education is increasingly seen as a consumer product, new types of legal issues are arising from the way evidence about performance is gathered and used and about the privacy of data. Legal claims more familiar to a business context are being asserted and can be expected to increase. Whistle-blower claims concerning fraud in government-funded programs have been filed, as well as claims of breach of contract and defective products. Finally, criminal prosecutions are being utilized to address systemic cheating in evaluation systems.