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having a "results" page on studio website
#2072523 04/27/13 11:41 PM
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Do any of you have one of these? And what are your thoughts on them?

A few of the studios in my area have results pages, where they display the students name and the mark they got in their exam, and also students who placed in competitions.

I have a testimonials page at the moment, but I'm thinking of scrapping that and "letting the results speak for themselves" as they say.

My only concerns are parents who don't want their childs name on the internet - "anonymous: grade 2, A"? I mean what do you do then? And also whether to just have it as an "honor roll" type page with only the best results, or show the good the bad and the ugly, in which case again, parents might not want other parents knowing their child got less than an A. From my perspective, not only would it be good advertising, but also good for other current parents/students to see what other children are getting, and realise where the bar is.

I'm leaning towards showing all results, not just great results. Just not sure what the legal aspects are (do I need to get signed consent forms from parents to place their child's name on the internet?) and what to do if parents ask me not to put their childs results up.

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Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2072536 04/28/13 12:17 AM
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Don't show all the results. Why would you want to post the low scores or the fails? [Linked Image]


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Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2072582 04/28/13 01:32 AM
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I would not put the children's names and marks up. I do not believe it serves any useful purpose. Rather expand on how you teach. You might consider a small video of only a student's hands and voice as they learn something interesting from you.

The point of the initial advertising is to get them to call you. Then you can ascertain if they need more information on your students' test results.

Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2072587 04/28/13 01:41 AM
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My only concerns are parents who don't want their childs name on the internet - "anonymous: grade 2, A"? I mean what do you do then?


You can included this in your legal document that you about to have parents sign:

For the purpose of announcing competitions and tests results on studio website, I am comfortable with...
Check only one box from below:
Box 1: Include my child's first and last name
Box 2: Include my child's first name
Box 3: Please do not include my child's name at all

Parents Name: ____________
Signature: _______________
Date: ________________

From my experience, 80% would opt for only first name, 10% opt for both first and last name and another 10% would opt for anonymous.

So, for those choose anonymous, you can write:
"Anonymous, Grade 2, A"

Try it, let me know what is the percentage in your studio.



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Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2072663 04/28/13 07:45 AM
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I would put a more generic blurb up to the effect of, "Students here have won or placed in Blahblahcompetition" or something to that effect. I see nothing wrong with this statement and no need to get releases from parents.


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Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Morodiene #2072686 04/28/13 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Morodiene
I would put a more generic blurb up to the effect of, "Students here have won or placed in Blahblahcompetition" or something to that effect. I see nothing wrong with this statement and no need to get releases from parents.


I agree. Or, maybe put how many students scored each grade. For example, "10 out of the 13 students scored an A." I wouldn't put names on your website without parent consent, and that might be more hassle than it is worth.


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Re: having a "results" page on studio website
AZNpiano #2072786 04/28/13 12:28 PM
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Originally Posted by AZNpiano
Don't show all the results. Why would you want to post the low scores or the fails? [Linked Image]


Indeed.

In my area, and I think this probably generalizes, teachers who have very advanced students who compete in high level competitions and who go on to conservatories often have pages that showcase the triumphs of their students. This is just good PR for the teacher and for those students.

Here is an example:

sample showcase page

Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2072911 04/28/13 04:02 PM
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I also think you shouldn't post the results. Do you really want to encourage the type of studio where the children and parents are competing with each other? It also makes the exams seem like the only measure of student success.
If you really have to post results, I liked pianopaws idea the most - don't name the students.


Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2072941 04/28/13 04:52 PM
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Okay, I think you've all managed to convince me it's not a good idea! Haha. Maybe I'll give up on that one.

I could just have the number of each grade achieved I suppose.

I haven't had anyone get anything lower than a B in their exams so far, so I hadn't thought about what I'd do if they failed.

If anything I'll just do Bs and above, but I'm thinking it might be more trouble than it's worth.

Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2073000 04/28/13 06:07 PM
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I have a page on my site that's titled 'Students Perform'. Other teachers might call it 'Studio News' or something.... I have pics of students who participate in various festivals, CM, Guild, Jazz, Composing, Improvisation. I like to video each students' performance and then make a montage of bits from everyone and post it as a video on my site. Definitely have to have parents' permission. It is a great way to promote your lessons what your students have accomplished.

I wouldn't post specific scores on tests. Those you can email.


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Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2073021 04/28/13 06:40 PM
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I don't get it. This isn't all-or-nothing. One can post "news," which could include your students' marvelous achivements, without posting a grade sheet for all of your students. In fact, I don't think anyone has defended the idea that you should post everyone's Guild scores, failures and all. After all, you don't have to imitate British universities! But why would one not want to publicize your students' successes? If a student wins an event or gets a prize, that's certainly newsworthy on your website.

Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Piano*Dad #2073236 04/29/13 12:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Piano*Dad
But why would one not want to publicize your students' successes? If a student wins an event or gets a prize, that's certainly newsworthy on your website.


Several reasons come to mind:
After a while, it becomes a tedious list, as in your example.

Children need to have a say in whether their results are publicized. For instance, a child might not want a 2nd place to be on their list of accomplishments.

It may also not be safe in terms of possible child abductions if a child has a last name that's unique.

Also, this list doesn't say as much as you might think. Sometimes a child places well in a competition or festival because there are only two competitors. Also, many good teachers don't feel the need to brag about their successes. They may think it's more important that a child continues to play piano into adulthood for recreation rather than that s/he wins many prizes, and then quits upon entering university.

Last edited by Candywoman; 04/29/13 12:52 AM.
Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Piano*Dad #2073282 04/29/13 04:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Piano*Dad
I don't get it. This isn't all-or-nothing. One can post "news," which could include your students' marvelous achivements, without posting a grade sheet for all of your students. In fact, I don't think anyone has defended the idea that you should post everyone's Guild scores, failures and all. After all, you don't have to imitate British universities! But why would one not want to publicize your students' successes? If a student wins an event or gets a prize, that's certainly newsworthy on your website.


I used to publicize noteworthy results achieved by my students in my website. But nowadays I have stopped doing it for a few reasons. First, like someone has mentioned earlier it creates an unnecessary competitive atmosphere. Though I don't deny a little friendly competition is not harmful, I notice that my weaker students tend to be demoralized more easily as it seemed that I only acknowledged the stronger ones. I always exhort my students to make the best music possible according to their abilities and I am proud of what they achieved as long they tried their best. So nowadays, I have a page on my website dedicated to host a selection of performances from my students. As long a performance is reasonably secure, I will put it up in my Youtube channel. This way, all my students feel acknowledged equally.

Second, I do not wish to attract obsessive ambitious parents with a pre-set high expectation. I notice when I posted the results, I got more enquiries from this type of parents. Nowadays, most enquiries I get are from students or parents who genuinely want to learn and appreciate the instrument. They may still be ambitious, but good result is never the driving force behind their learning.


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Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2073284 04/29/13 05:04 AM
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Candywoman, I completely agree with you on everything you said, and I do want students who enjoy piano, rather than creating negatives and an overly competitive environment.

I just started feeling competitive towards other studios in my city with a braggart wall of achievements, but actually I do find it kind of distasteful. Scrapping that idea now!

Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Candywoman #2073334 04/29/13 07:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Candywoman
Also, this list doesn't say as much as you might think. Sometimes a child places well in a competition or festival because there are only two competitors.


It's an outcome measure, and that tends to be the way most teachers are evaluated.

But outcome measures always include factors beyond the teacher's control, like the above mentioned competition with only two students, or the talent pool in the area, etc.

While it's difficult to do, I think I'd rather see output measures. The video of a teaching moment mentioned above is along that line.


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Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Candywoman #2073335 04/29/13 08:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Candywoman
Originally Posted by Piano*Dad
But why would one not want to publicize your students' successes? If a student wins an event or gets a prize, that's certainly newsworthy on your website.


Several reasons come to mind:
After a while, it becomes a tedious list, as in your example.



I think the list was impressive. But I agree that it was tedious. It could give parents the impression that the teacher is way too busy with advancing students to care about the efforts of a beginner. OTOH, it could attract intermediate and advanced students, if that is the goal.

I think a bragging page is best kept to a minimum. Like the color red, "a little dab'll do ya".

Re: having a "results" page on studio website
TimR #2073339 04/29/13 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by TimR

It's an outcome measure, and that tends to be the way most teachers are evaluated.

But outcome measures always include factors beyond the teacher's control, like the above mentioned competition with only two students, or the talent pool in the area, etc.

The wording isn't anything that I would use, and normally might be almost impossible for me to understand, but since my thoughts were going exactly that way - I agree. In fact, maybe we've had a language barrier a couple of times!

"Outcome" meaning the results that come from preparing for a recital or exam or competition. A lot of people might look at these, because numbers are something they understand and are used to. It doesn't mean that these numbers have much to do with what can actually be learned, or what lessons are (should be) about.

Knowing what I know, if I saw a teacher's site that talked mostly about results, even very good ones, I might well avoid that teacher for having the wrong priorities.

Beth Frances, I read your blog. You seem to have looked at all sides of learning to play an instrument, and probably have a lot of things that you put into your teaching. The teaching is what it's about (imho). Personally those are the kinds of things I would look for if I had a child about to take lessons. Does this differ if a parent doesn't know anything about learning to play an instrument? I don't know.

Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2073341 04/29/13 08:29 AM
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A thought:
When I tutored kids having difficulty with school subjects, over and over one of the main causes of their problems was that they worried about giving right answers. This was tied in with getting grades, and such. It stopped them from thinking and becoming involved in the subject. Piano lessons is one place where a student is not competing against anyone else, with half an eye on grades and only a bit of attention on the wonderful things he can be learning by exploring them. Why undermine the greatest advantage that one-to-one lessons have?

Re: having a "results" page on studio website
keystring #2073383 04/29/13 09:41 AM
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Originally Posted by keystring
The wording isn't anything that I would use, and normally might be almost impossible for me to understand, but since my thoughts were going exactly that way - I agree. In fact, maybe we've had a language barrier a couple of times!



I knew that might happen when I used the terms.

Output and outcome are standard terms for different types of measurements used in process improvement methods like Lean, Six Sigma, SQC, etc. Anybody in industry who uses metrics to track how they are performing will be familiar. Teaching? Not so much, I would guess.

The two are related, of course.

Output is what you do. Outcome is the results.

Maybe you increase customer service hours by an hour a day.

But nobody ever needs service during that hour anyway. So you've increased your output but the outcome is unchanged.

When we talk about evaluating teachers through test scores, whether classroom teachers on standardized tests or piano teachers on festival scores, we are measuring an outcome.

But the outcome for a classroom teacher doesn't just depend on their teaching skills, it is hugely affected by the economic status of the neighborhood and the level of the students entering.

If you're going to hold teachers "accountable," it would be more fair to measure their output in terms of actual teaching skills. They may be doing the best job anybody could, but getting low test scores due to circumstances beyond their control, or doing a poor job but getting good scores ditto.

Of course, it is easy to end up measuring an output that doesn't contribute to outcome; this is not a simple task.


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Re: having a "results" page on studio website
Beth_Frances #2073464 04/29/13 12:48 PM
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OK, I get it. Like most other aspects of life, peoples' preferences drive choice.

Competitive environment: This is a taste thing. One person's view that this is a competitive pressure cooker is another person's normal, healthy incentives.

Let's take that tedious list I posted. Are all of those families compulsively competitive? I have known many such families (and some of the ones on that list!). The ones I have known have been quite normal, actually. Their kids are nice, and no more socially inept than kids (and families) with lower expectations and weaker musical backgrounds. Some of them go on to study music for a profession, some for a hobby, and yes, some drop it in college. But the idea that publicizing student success causes students to drop out of music in college is one for which I have never seen convincing evidence. The musical world is an ever finer sieve.

Yet I would agree that you will have a different set of issues to deal with if your students are like the ones on that list, and for many teachers those issues may not be ones they want to deal with.








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