Committed To Fighting For Equity and Access in Public Education

Featuring interviews, testimony and analysis on issues facing public education in the U.S. through voices of teachers, parents, students, community members, education activists and education scholars. Education Radio is committed to exposing the profit driven interests fueling current education policies while addressing issues of true equity and access in public education.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Teacher Performance Assessment: A Money Grab for Pearson

You can download mp3s of this program here:
Audioport (podcast)

This week on Education Radio we speak with Education Radio producer Barbara Madeloni and two students from the teacher education program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where she is on the faculty, Amy Lanham and Rachel Hoogstraten, about their experiences coming to understand and resist the incursion of privatizing forces on teacher education. Barbara, Amy and Rachel tell the story of the push for the development of a national teacher performance assessment (TPA) for student teachers, the infiltration of Pearson Inc into the distribution and scoring of the assessment, and the implications of these for public teacher education, teacher development, privacy and confidentiality, and how we understand what it means to teach. Their story reminds us that, as educators with a commitment to social justice, it is our responsibility to understand the neoliberal agenda, name it when we see it at work, educate each other about how it insinuates itself into our institutions and discourses, and stand together in solidarity to resist.

Amy Lanham is a doctoral student in English at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.Rachel Hoogstraten is working toward her M.Ed in English education at the University of Massachusett Amherst. Both Amy and Rachel are completing their student teaching practicum in the University of Massachusetts Amherst licensure program in secondary education.

Barbara Madeloni is a senior lecturer in the Department of Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and a member of the Education Radio collective.


  1. I am a student at the University of Memphis. I wish they would do what you did. We are supposed to get our scores back this week. Lots of stress. No samples of TPA papers that were scored 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 were given. We were given one sample of one task that received a 4 from the faculty (but not Pearson).

  2. Thank you for listening. Just because you have sent in your test scores does not mean that this is done. Were you given informed consent and an opportunity to opt in or out? Are they saying that your scores will 'count'? This is a field test, so your scores should not be part of our evaluation. is there a faculty person who you trust to ask about these issues? Please feel free to contact me at to speak more about this.
    in solidarity,
    and the Education Radio Collective