Harvard Educational Review
  1. Spring 2012 Issue »

    A Collaborative Effort

    Peer Review and the History of Teacher Evaluations in Montgomery County, Maryland

    Jeremy P. Sullivan
    In this article, Jeremy Sullivan explores the history of teacher evaluations in Montgomery County, Maryland. He describes how, over the course of three decades, the Montgomery County Education Association (MCEA) established itself as a strong and powerful professional association and leveraged its power to institutionalize a more collaborative approach to teacher evaluations in the county. Drawing largely on archival data from educational organizations in Montgomery County, Sullivan shows how the MCEA and its member teachers objected to evaluation mechanisms they considered unfair and ineffective. He then outlines the process through which the MCEA worked together with administrators to develop the Peer Assisted Review program. Today this program, jointly run by MCEA and the school system, enjoys widespread support in the county and serves as an example of how teachers and their unions can partner with administrators to work together toward the goal of improving teaching and learning in public schools.

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    Jeremy P. Sullivan is a lecturer in the Department of History at California State University, Long Beach. His research focuses on the politics surrounding public schools, particularly in suburban areas, and the ways that competing definitions of educational excellence help to shape politics and policy. For several years, he worked with public high schools in Maryland and Washington, D.C., on improving history education as part of an initiative sponsored by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. He is currently working on a book about the history of educational politics in post-WWII Montgomery County, Maryland.
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    Spring 2012 Issue


    “A Few of the Brightest, Cleanest Mexican Children”
    School Segregation as a Form of Mundane Racism in Oxnard, California, 1900–1940
    David G. García, Tara J. Yosso, and Frank P. Barajas
    Changing Our Landscape of Inquiry for a New Science of Education
    Gary Thomas
    Institutional Racist Melancholia
    A Structural Understanding of Grief and Power in Schooling
    Sabina Vaught
    Symposium: By What Measure?
    Mapping and Expanding the Teacher Effectiveness Debate
    Contextual Influences on Inquiries into Effective Teaching and Their Implications for Improving Student Learning
    Anthony Bryk, Heather Harding, and Sharon Greenberg
    Having It Both Ways
    Building the Capacity of Individual Teachers and Their Schools
    Susan Moore Johnson
    Refocusing the Debate
    Assessing the Purposes and Tools of Teacher Evaluation
    John Papay
    A Collaborative Effort
    Peer Review and the History of Teacher Evaluations in Montgomery County, Maryland
    Jeremy P. Sullivan
    “We Are the Ones in the Classrooms—Ask Us!”
    Student Voice in Teacher Evaluations
    Boston Student Advisory Council

    Book Notes

    Our Difficult Sunlight
    Georgia A. Popoff and Quraysh Ali Lansana

    Call 1-800-513-0763 to order this issue.