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fiscalconservative





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PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2009 11:13 pm    Post subject: Re: When the left is right and the right is left Reply with quote

chrisreid wrote:


I've very confused on your position CPP, you are worrying about Tim Hudak going too far to the "right", because you claim Mike Harris' policies were bad. But then you refute your own statement by using the Liberals as an example, since they have left virtually all of Mike Harris' policies in place. The only two policies I can remember the Liberals rescinding are tax credits for parents than send their children to private schools, and re-regulating electricity prices.



I think you would have to add welfare and education to that as well. They have not rolled back workfare (thank god), but they have dropped the lifetime bans, the liens on houses. The have reindexed benefits, etc. They have gotten rid of those idiotic teachers tests as well as made other changes.
Much of what Harper did they couldn't roll back though. How do you reverse an amalgamation ? Recreate the local tax system for education. That does not mean they don't agree with what he did, its just not worth the bother to change it.
Mac





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PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2009 11:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Off topic, I know, but what was your objection to teacher testing? You married to an incompetent teacher or ??

-Mac
fiscalconservative





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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 12:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mac wrote:
Off topic, I know, but what was your objection to teacher testing? You married to an incompetent teacher or ??

-Mac


My objection was to the particular tests. I saw a few of them published, and they were utter nonsense - they look like a combination of a basic math/english test along with a psudeo IQ test.
To be a teacher, it requires two university degrees. I doubt many teachers are utter dummys.
On the other hand, if I taught music for 30 years, I would likely not do that well on the math section - nor would I need to.
The test measures nothing about a persons ability to teach.

I am sure being a police officer and being a teacher require the same sorts of skills. Being able to interact with and understand people. How would you feel if in a tense environment like Harris had with the teachers, someone decided their should be police officer tests. Every police officer who failed a math test would be let go ?

How would you have reacted if Gates declared "we should give police officers english math and IQ tests" Would you not find that insulting ?
Mac





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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 1:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fiscalconservative wrote:
My objection was to the particular tests. I saw a few of them published, and they were utter nonsense - they look like a combination of a basic math/english test along with a psudeo IQ test.

Did you see the actual tests or interpretations of the tests presented to the teacher by the media? In most cases, tests of this nature are retained, not released, so they don't have to rewrite as often.

fiscalconservative wrote:
To be a teacher, it requires two university degrees. I doubt many teachers are utter dummys.

Take, for example, someone scraped through two degrees with barely passing grades and is a lousy teacher. What mechanism would you recommend to identifying such candidates for remedial training and, failing improvement, placement in an appropriate non-teaching role OR removal?

fiscalconservative wrote:
On the other hand, if I taught music for 30 years, I would likely not do that well on the math section - nor would I need to.

If the test is as basic as you suggested, it shouldn't be a problem.

fiscalconservative wrote:
The test measures nothing about a persons ability to teach.

Do you have an evidence to support that assertion or is it simply your opinion? I'm willing to bet those exams were professionally designed (at taxpayer's cost) to offer an objective measure of a teacher's capabilities. As it sits now, there is no such mechanism.

fiscalconservative wrote:
I am sure being a police officer and being a teacher require the same sorts of skills. Being able to interact with and understand people. How would you feel if in a tense environment like Harris had with the teachers, someone decided their should be police officer tests. Every police officer who failed a math test would be let go ?

There are some similar skills but not many. Police must interact and understand but typically our role is to dominate; to take control. Teachers? Not so much.

Unions prefer an adversarial relationship with governments. They work hard to keep union members simmering and ready to boil over with manufactured outrage. If the union was willing to work with the government to establish accountability processes, the environment wouldn't have been tense whatsoever. Instead, they rejected any and all accountability, fought the concept tooth and nail... and worked hard to ensure the efforts of the Harris government in general and Harris personally were stigmatized.

fiscalconservative wrote:
How would you have reacted if Gates declared "we should give police officers english math and IQ tests" Would you not find that insulting ?

You're not likely aware of this but police do what is called "block training" where we're required to prove our competence in various police-related skills. This involves everything from first aid certification to gas mask drills to "use of force" scenarios using "simu-rounds" and inert pepperspray... and everything in between.

As well, if RCMP members wish to advance through the ranks, we're required to do job simulation exams in order to qualify. Once qualified, if we apply for a promotional position, we're required to present written examples of our day-to-day performance which demonstrate our competency in specific areas applicable to the position. Failure to demonstrate competency means no promotion.

While a single instance of failure at any of these exams or certifications would be unlikely to result in discharge, a failed candidate can be ordered to remedial training and retesting. Continued failure would result in restrictions and/or change or duties... or eventually dismissal.

So would I find it insulting if someone required testing? Nope... it's already so.

-Mac
fiscalconservative





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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mac wrote:
fiscalconservative wrote:
My objection was to the particular tests. I saw a few of them published, and they were utter nonsense - they look like a combination of a basic math/english test along with a psudeo IQ test.


Did you see the actual tests or interpretations of the tests presented to the teacher by the media?


The opposition and/or teachers union went around the province with a teachers test and dared politicians to take it. To the best of my knowledge none did. I have not really followed the controversy much since after the orriginal protests. The orriginal proposl was to buy the test from the United States. I believe the teachers had sample exams from that test.

This *may* be the test they were using
http://www.cbest.nesinc.com/CA.....opener.asp

OOPS....
As I read more I find that the test was changed from a "basic skills" test to something that deals more with knowledge of the teaching profession as a result of the protests. The government also seems to have changed their mind about testing teachers who were already working as well.

Mac wrote:

In most cases, tests of this nature are retained, not released, so they don't have to rewrite as often..


Most companies that produce standardized tests will release copies of their old tests, or release sample tests. This is true for any of the major academic tests such as SAT GRE GMAT LSAT MCAT PCAT etc. They do this to make the results more valid.
They can't keep the questions secret because of "brain dumps" (people write down everything they can remember right after the test and upload it to the internet). If they did not make the test available, those who cheated by going to a brain dump site or paying a test preparation service would have a big advantage.


fiscalconservative wrote:
.
Quote:
To be a teacher, it requires two university degrees. I doubt many teachers are utter dummys.


Take, for example, someone scraped through two degrees with barely passing grades and is a lousy teacher. What mechanism would you recommend to identifying such candidates for remedial training and, failing improvement, placement in an appropriate non-teaching role OR removal?


I don't connect being a lousy teacher to barely scrapping by. If I am a math teacher, "barely scraping buy" in university would mean I still had WAY more than enough knowledge to teach math at highschool (if math was their degree)

As for what would I recomend. Well, real teacher testing is tough and expensive because its hard to measure "good teaching". Most post secondary courses have students fill out a "how well did the teacher do " form, but lots of people think that leads to grade inflation. They have matched those reviews to grades and found the student who got the best grades gave the best reviews of the teacher. Little conflict of interest there.
You can try looking at the students scores on standardized tests, but that can be misleading as well. A school in a wealthy neighbourhood is going to get better scores than a poor one with lots of new Canadians.
Alberta requiires mandatory observation of the teacher by the principle or other supervisor. To me thats the best way to go. The obsever would not be part of the teachers union, and hopefully after having risen through the ranks he would understand good/bad teaching.
We had that sort of thing when I was in high school. The teacher let us know "the principle will be here tomorrow, be on your best behavior". Bad idea, gave people time to plan.


fiscalconservative wrote:
Quote:
On the other hand, if I taught music for 30 years, I would likely not do that well on the math section - nor would I need to.

If the test is as basic as you suggested, it shouldn't be a problem.


Well, wait until your 60 and try to remember highschool math you haven't taken in upteen years.


fiscalconservative wrote:
Quote:
The test measures nothing about a persons ability to teach.

Do you have an evidence to support that assertion or is it simply your opinion? I'm willing to bet those exams were professionally designed (at taxpayer's cost) to offer an objective measure of a teacher's capabilities. As it sits now, there is no such mechanism.


I could find upteen links that support this idea. The exams that were finally used were developed by a company in the States along with the Principles union. They were more a test of government policy and stuff related to the courses taught at teachers college. Again, I was talking about the orriginal American model that which focused on basic skils and was insulting.


Quote:
. Police must interact and understand but typically our role is to dominate; to take control. Teachers? Not so much.


Can your ability to "dominate" be measured in a pen and paper test ?

Quote:

As well, if RCMP mem................................................................fications would be unlikely to result in discharge, a failed candidate can be ordered to remedial training and retesting. Continued failure would result in restrictions and/or change or duties... or eventually dismissal.

So would I find it insulting if someone required testing? Nope... it's already so.

-Mac


This list of tests you mention all relate directly to your job. The American style basic skills test does not. My question was, how would you feel if you were required to pass a math and English test to do your job ? What if the people demanding it had a tense relationship with police.
Teachers here are tested as well, but with in class observation - which is a reasonable metric.

Teachers are (in parts of the US) the only ones ever threatened with "better study highschool math, because we are gonna test you on it, and you better pass or else".

My real objection might be more to the politics behind it. The orriginal proposal seem more designed to inflame the teachers union. The education minister who came up with this was caught on tape saying "we need to create a crisis in education". I think that was the goal of this more than anything else. (Like I said, I did not realise the tests had been changed from Snoblens orriginal idea).
CPP





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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:36 pm    Post subject: Re: When the left is right and the right is left Reply with quote

chrisreid wrote:
CPP wrote:

Yes, in some areas Premier McSlippery is right leaning, like keeping most of Mikey's downloading policies in place, continues to close hospitals, hasnt deamalgamate Toronto & Ottawa and just loves HM PM Harper for his very generous auto bailouts and infrastructure programs plus allows some of the private sector to police themselves like Propane Yards (remember the Toronto Sunrise explosion) and then there is his P3 private/public building of Ontario Hospitals (which is a way over budget).
Geez, come to think about, Harper is turning to the left of the political spectrum putting the country further into debt with his generous financial bailouts. Something one would expect the federal lieberals to do like under Trudeau and his thugs.
Its getting harder and harder to tell who is from what party :roll:


I've very confused on your position CPP, you are worrying about Tim Hudak going too far to the "right", because you claim Mike Harris' policies were bad. But then you refute your own statement by using the Liberals as an example, since they have left virtually all of Mike Harris' policies in place. The only two policies I can remember the Liberals rescinding are tax credits for parents than send their children to private schools, and re-regulating electricity prices.

The whole point of the party base is to ensure the party elites serve its members, and to advocate to the public conservative policy positions. Once again, you ask public opinion polls to find out the issues people care about, not the solutions, because the public is no informed about the solutions. It's up to people in the party from the grassroots up to the elite to stand up and provide conservative SOLUTIONS to problems.
There are conservative solutions to healthcare, poverty, education, and they have proven to work where implemented. Having school vouchers so poor families can afford to send their children to private schools, has been hugely successful in the U.S. where it has been applied. Consumer-driven healthcare (tax free savings accounts for healthcare, and tax deductions on health insurance, and out of pocket expenses) has been very popular in the U.S..

We should not be affraid of taking on Liberals on their own turf - healthcare, education, environment, as they have been miserable failures on these issues, whilst claiming to be the party that cares the most.


Obviously, McGuinty liked many of Harris's policies but thats not saying many Ontarians did.
And its my opinion that if Tim Hudak runs on Mikey's former policies only, will lose dramatically at the polls. Ontario has changed and prefers someone from the centre of the political spectrum. Thats why its so important to detemine in advance of the next election as to what Ontarians expect from the right and not what the right thinks is right for Ontario :wink:
And remember, Ontario is not the states having a having a (possible) social conservative conscience.
Again, have we learned nothing from the last two elections :?: And now it appears there is a problem in the ranks as Bill Murdoch is slamming Norm Sterling for suggesting that municipal politics should have a party structure. Another example of in-house fighting in the party. http://www.theglobeandmail.com.....le1242239/
Mac





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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fiscalconservative wrote:
My real objection might be more to the politics behind it. The orriginal proposal seem more designed to inflame the teachers union. The education minister who came up with this was caught on tape saying "we need to create a crisis in education". I think that was the goal of this more than anything else. (Like I said, I did not realise the tests had been changed from Snoblens orriginal idea).

Now we get to the crux of the matter; you don't like the politics of the situation. So why go through all the song & dance about the test?

I don't suppose you have a link regarding that statement from the minister? What possible purpose would it serve for a government to create a crisis in education? If the government wanted an excuse to whack the education budget, they didn't have to make one up. The teacher's union is powerful and entrenched. All the minister had to say was "budget cut" and the union would go up in flames on cue.

-Mac
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fiscalconservative wrote:
If I am a math teacher, "barely scraping buy" in university would mean I still had WAY more than enough knowledge to teach math at highschool (if math was their degree)

When I was in grade 12, my physics teacher, math teacher and history teacher were all gym teachers. So was my computer teacher, and half the teachers who did options like shop / design ...etc. I'd bet money that 70% or more the teachers currently working have either English or Kinesiology (aka Gym) as their degrees. It is extremely rare to find teachers who have degrees in Math or Science - which is fine, as it is, IMO, totally unnecessary. I think a lot of teachers are over educated, and it's highly questionable that they need two degrees to do their jobs.
fiscalconservative





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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mac wrote:
fiscalconservative wrote:
My real objection might be more to the politics behind it. The orriginal proposal seem more designed to inflame the teachers union. The education minister who came up with this was caught on tape saying "we need to create a crisis in education". I think that was the goal of this more than anything else. (Like I said, I did not realise the tests had been changed from Snoblens orriginal idea).


Now we get to the crux of the matter; you don't like the politics of the situation. So why go through all the song & dance about the test?


I didn't like it for a number of reasons. The orriginal proposal of American style tests was a complete waste of money. What was finally implemented, well, I am a sort of lukewarm to.


Mac wrote:

I don't suppose you have a link regarding that statement from the minister?


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Snobelen
Mentions it. It was a big story when it happened, Snobelen was addressing a group of administrators and one of them recorded it. The media played it over and over and over and...over again.

It mentions it again here
http://www.lilith-ezine.com/ar.....hools.html

I think Harper could have done a lot more with education if it were not for "teacher testing" and the imploding rookie minister.

Mac wrote:

What possible purpose would it serve for a government to create a crisis in education? If the government wanted an excuse to whack the education budget, they didn't have to make one up. The teacher's union is powerful and entrenched. All the minister had to say was "budget cut" and the union would go up in flames on cue.

-Mac


Well, I think what he meant was that he had to get the idea out that the education system had major problems. The status quo attitude would not create public support for major changes. He wanted to create a sort of tipping point. If things aren't that bad, why tip over the apple cart, start wars with all the little fiefdoms that were the school boards and face huge teachers strikes.
He was just a rookie minister (and had not even graduated highscholl himself), and came up with some really bad words to express the idea.
fiscalconservative





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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FF_Canuck wrote:
fiscalconservative wrote:
If I am a math teacher, "barely scraping buy" in university would mean I still had WAY more than enough knowledge to teach math at highschool (if math was their degree)

When I was in grade 12, my physics teacher, math teacher and history teacher were all gym teachers. So was my computer teacher, and half the teachers who did options like shop / design ...etc. I'd bet money that 70% or more the teachers currently working have either English or Kinesiology (aka Gym) as their degrees. It is extremely rare to find teachers who have degrees in Math or Science - which is fine, as it is, IMO, totally unnecessary. I think a lot of teachers are over educated, and it's highly questionable that they need two degrees to do their jobs.


Wow. My experience was different. I think every science teacher I had a degree in their filed - except maybe computer science.
In that case, there should be some sort of qualifying test to teach outside of your field. Of course, if you fail it, they still are not going to be able to find someone with a degree :-)

I do know someone who graduated from teachers college and can't find a job - and he and he is qualified to teach chemistry and math. Maybe he needs to apply at your school.
Mac





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PostPosted: Thu Aug 06, 2009 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

fiscalconservative wrote:
I didn't like it for a number of reasons. The orriginal proposal of American style tests was a complete waste of money. What was finally implemented, well, I am a sort of lukewarm to.

I might agree with you if there were accountability mechanism in place to ensure teachers do their jobs well but such is not the case. The milquetoast dispute mechanisms of the College of Teachers are designed to placate and most people are not even aware of their existence.

fiscalconservative wrote:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Snobelen
Mentions it. It was a big story when it happened, Snobelen was addressing a group of administrators and one of them recorded it. The media played it over and over and over and...over again.

It mentions it again here
http://www.lilith-ezine.com/ar.....hools.html

I think Harper could have done a lot more with education if it were not for "teacher testing" and the imploding rookie minister.

Thanks for the links. I was in BC during that time. Snobelen's comments didn't get much airtime out there or at least I don't recall hearing/reading about it.

Harper has no business doing anything with education since it is provincial jurisdiction. I presume you meant Harris?

fiscalconservative wrote:
Well, I think what he meant was that he had to get the idea out that the education system had major problems. The status quo attitude would not create public support for major changes. He wanted to create a sort of tipping point. If things aren't that bad, why tip over the apple cart, start wars with all the little fiefdoms that were the school boards and face huge teachers strikes.
He was just a rookie minister (and had not even graduated highscholl himself), and came up with some really bad words to express the idea.

It's never easy dealing with unions and teacher's unions are amongst the worst. One expects unions to take an adversarial role but, for whatever reason, the teachers take adversarial to ludicrous ends... Nurses unions too...

-Mac
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 06, 2009 11:43 am    Post subject: Re: When the left is right and the right is left Reply with quote

CPP wrote:
its my opinion that if Tim Hudak runs on Mikey's former policies only, will lose dramatically at the polls. Ontario has changed and prefers someone from the centre of the political spectrum.


To compare and contrast the economy under basically two terms of Harris, and the compare them to the mess the Liberals created from 2003 onward I am not all that concerned about the Liberals attacking Hudak for being the next Mike Harris.

I heard a very interesting line from an economist a few weeks ago about the potential for McGuinty to lose nearly 80% of the jobs that were created under Harris by 2011.

The Liberals are more then welcome to whip em out and compare economic records, as a matter of fact I hope they do.

As for Liberals wanting someone more in the center, I disagree.
Ontario votes for what is in Ontario's best interest, or perceived best interest.

51 of Ontario's 106 Federal Seats are Conservative.

The more "center" the Liberals went, the more support they lost in Ontario.

As long as Hudak does not apologize for being a Conservative like Tory seemed to do he will do just fine.
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