Preston C. Green III, who holds a joint appointment with the Law School and Penn State’s College of Education, has been appointed the Batschelet chaired professor of educational administration in the College of Education. Green is professor-in-charge of the College’s Educational Leadership program. He also helped develop Penn State's joint degree programs in law and education and is the director of the annual Law and Education Institute at Penn State, which provides instruction on educational law to teachers, administrators, and attorneys.
Green said he plans to “use the chair as a forum for promoting research on educational law and policy issues. I will also continue my work in helping educators and attorneys understand how law impacts schools.” Among the issues that Green sees on the horizon is the potential for litigation surrounding Value-Added Modeling (VAM) teacher assessment policies. “In an attempt to make their evaluation systems more rigorous, states are adopting policies that base teacher evaluation policies on the performance of students. Some states have required their teacher evaluation systems to be based 50% or more on student performance. While these policies makes sense on their face, VAM suffers from substantial technical problems that may result in an alarming number of good teachers being falsely identified as “ineffective” and eventually terminated. Teachers will challenge VAM policies on due process grounds,” he said.
The research that Green has been following indicates that, “black students tend to fair worse on standardized tests than white students; and black teachers are more likely to work in schools of low-income black students. Thus, it follows that black teachers are more likely to be dismissed on the basis of poor value-added test scores. Such teachers may sue on Title VII grounds.”
Green's research focuses on the legal issues surrounding school choice and educational access. He has written three books and nearly fifty articles and book chapters on educational law issues but admitted he was surprised by the appointment. “The first Batschelet Chair was William Boyd, who as an expert in the fields of educational policy and politics. He was an eminent scholar and good man and I’m proud to follow in his footsteps,” he added.
The Harry Lawrence Batschelet II Chair of Educational Administration is intended to continue and further scholarly excellence through contributions to instruction, research, and public service to support the field of educational administration. It was established in 2001 as the result of a gift from Batschelet ’53 Edu, former vice president for financial development at the American National Red Cross.
David H. Monk, dean of the College of Education in appointing Green said, “He has a remarkable ability to span boundaries and to frame important questions that prompt the creation of highly effective collaborative research teams."