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Hundreds Of D.C. Teachers Fired For Poor Evaluations

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Nearly 400 teachers have been fired in Washington, D.C. since 2009 because a rigorous evaluation system found they weren't up to the job.

The latest round of firings occurred in August, when 98 D.C. teachers lost their jobs. There was little local outcry. Instead, the president of the teachers union praised the school system for softening some of the evaluation criteria.

Comprehensive evaluations are an important part of the national school reform movement. They also were a major point of contention in the seven-day long Chicago teachers' strike, which ended Tuesday.

In Washington, evaluations based in part on standardized tests have been used since 2009 to rate teacher performance, putting the city at the forefront of major school systems that are working to reform their personnel practices.

NPR

Pack These Pages: Three Must-Reads For Summer

Harriet Logan, owner of Loganberry Books in Shaker Heights, Ohio, recommends a graphic novel about trash, a George Eliot classic and a children's book about a bear pianist.
NPR

Why Does Every New Restaurant Look Like A Factory?

The stripped-down look of exposed brick, poured cement floors, and Edison light bulbs is popular in restaurants across America. One reporter dares to ask, "Seriously, why?"
WAMU 88.5

Why Local Nonprofits Haven't Fixed Poverty

As long as there has been poverty, there have been people trying to end it. We explore the obstacles and inefficiencies local nonprofits run into when trying to solve society's stubborn problem.

WAMU 88.5

Can We Trust Our Cars?

There were more airbag recalls this week, and VW has agreed to pay nearly fifteen billion in its emissions cheating scandal. Meanwhile, cars with driverless technology are becoming available, but whether they will make us safer is up for debate. A look at auto safety and consumer trust.

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