Town Square

Performance-based Teacher Compensation

Original post made by Stacey, Amberwood/Wood Meadows, on Mar 11, 2009

This isn't meant to be a parcel tax discussion. It's an attempt to look at how to align teacher compensation with educational goals.

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Posted by Sandy
a resident of Mohr Park
on Mar 12, 2009 at 7:42 am

Sandy is a registered user.

Hi Stacey,

I generally support merit pay for teachers, provided that it is implemented fairly. For instance, the piece you posted by Julia Koppich states that "Value-added calculations, however, should not be used as the sole gauge of teachers' compensation. They too are an imperfect technology."

It is critical that a merit pay system include observation by many experienced outsiders, and not just the principal or other teachers from the same school. I also think that mentoring for new teachers, and any who are not meeting expectations (regardless of tenure) is very important for motivating teachers.

I wish I could attend the PACE conference on March 30 in Oakland, where alternative forms of teacher compensation will be examined in depth. Unfortunately, I will be starting a new quarter of teaching that day, so I can't. Perhaps someone else will be able to attend:

Web Link

Here's an article from last fall in the Washington Post, about an experiment in Maryland's Prince George school district with merit pay, that I found interesting:

Web Link

There are also interesting posts at DailyKos about these issues:

Web Link

I definitely think other options are worth exploring.

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Posted by .
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 12, 2009 at 7:44 am

Until unions are either in the minority among all teachers, or eliminated altogether, public schools are "unfixable." The US Dept. of Education needs to be abolished. The stranglehold the unions and NEA have over the education of our students will continue. Competition for our tax dollars toward education should be instituted. If I send my child to a private or charter school, instead of a public school, why can't my tax dollars toward education be directed toward those schools instead. Currently, my tax dollars include lining the pockets of the teachers unions who have no intention of improving the quality of education.

A couple years ago, my elementary school child was studying the topic of parasites. Her definition related to an "organism that sucks the lifeblood out of its host organism while providing no beneficial effects to the host." She then listed some examples of parasites. At that time, I was tempted to add "unions" to her list (tho I kept my composure and did not do so.)

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Posted by Karen
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Mar 13, 2009 at 8:02 pm

I'm just finishing up with educating my 3 kids...I really believe that teachers' unions have made our country's schools mediocre because they protect underperformers. My kids have had some really great teachers - every community knows who the good teachers are - but my kids have had too many teachers who just do the minimum. We need some competition and accountability in the teaching ranks if we want to see our national educational system reach a higher standard.