Apr 11, 2012

ARTICLE: Merit Pay

Merit Pay For Teachers In Indiana School Districts Raise Questions 

"[B]ased on economic and political theory: Merit pay will increase incentives to do good work. Good teachers will make more money. Poor teachers will be removed. Overall pay — along with student performance — could actually rise."

The logic is clear...
Schools = business. 
Students = product (like hamburgers or smartphones).
Teachers = workers needing incentive to do a better job. 
Test scores = the infallible measure of a teacher's worth. 
Merit pay = incentive for teachers who need a dangling carrot to motivate their lazy butts. 
Research = [search returns no results] 
"[M]any educators criticize performance pay plans, arguing that the promise of more money will not make them work harder. And research backs them up. A 2010 study by the National Center on Performance Incentives found no significant difference in student achievement between teachers who were given bonuses for boosting test scores and those who weren't."

"Proponents of merit pay counter that the current salary structure doesn't always make sense, either — research has demonstrated no relationship between advanced teaching degrees and student performance — and say the ultimate goal of merit pay is to attract higher quality students into the profession."

That should work. Let's not attract higher quality students into the profession by improving teacher preparation programs or offering higher salaries or treating teachers as professionals by giving them a voice. No, let's make them jump through hoops and promise them a few extra bucks in their pockets. Maybe.

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