Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Utterly Useless Feedback

There is a site on the Internet that allows you to "rate" your teacher anonymously. I am happy that I have gotten a good rating from my old school (3 votes - all good news), but really how much does this help people? Rate Your Teacher has a system of flagging comments for inappropriate or un-helpful content, but it leaves some or all flagged comments up for others to read.

If a student has feedback, I would be more than willing to listen. I would be happy to listen, and would respect their point of view, ask them to provide examples or evidence and show them consideration.

Anonymous postings attract students that are fans, and students that don't like the teacher. Its nice to feel liked and popular, but sometimes teachers have to do what is right, and not what is popular. If they are acting like professionals, but have had to discipline a student or give work the grade it deserves (a bitter pill for some to swallow I am sure), should they be berated publicly by nameless, faceless, immature individuals?

I liken this kind of anonymous posting to grafiti on bathroom walls.

1 comment:

Mrs. Holder said...

Hello James,

I have been out of the loop since school started back...I kept up with my blog and the ones I read pretty well until I started having papers to grade etc. Oh, the wonderful life of a teacher. After all we only work from 8:00 to 3:30 right?

Mrs. Holder

Anyway, I agree with you about those who want to rate their teachers anonymously. While I believe it human nature for someone to want to strike back at a teacher, I think it can be handled more professionally. For example, sit down face to face after tempers have cooled and listen to each side of the story. Kids may find that "we" aren't out to get them but rather have many of the same anxieties they themselves experience.

I do realize that youngsters often don't have the maturity to be able to discuss things reasonably but shouldn't this be part of growing up?