Should teachers receive incentive pay for improving student performance?

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Jackie (not verified)

There are several problems

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There are several problems with incentive pay, not the least of which is the tendency for teachers to be less likely to share best practices when a climate of competition is set up. The other big factor, of course, is the difference in the teaching conditions. How can a teacher who has high turnover in his/her class during the year, and very little support from the home, not to mention a language barrier, be held to the same standards as a teacher in a school with students who stay all year, have involved parents and are English speaking to begin with. If any incentives are offered, it should not be for test scores, unless based on each individual student's growth, not the classes'. I would rather see the "extra" money spent on supplementing the teachers in the most difficult situations with help in the classroom, from aides to up-to-date technololgy and extra-curricular/after school support for the students, as well as outreach to the families to get them involved in their child's education.
Sandra Partain (not verified)

I am not opposed to

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I am not opposed to incentive pay, however, I question how "improvement" of student performance would be determined. An improvement in student grades may be the result of grade inflation. Improvement on standardized testing may not accurately reflect a student's true abilities or an instructor's contributions.
Jen (not verified)

Teachers who help increase

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Teachers who help increase student performance do deserve recognition and incentives. Really, that is all teachers, although the impact is not always known by or shown on the end of grade tests. Low-income schools can certainly benefit from high-quality teachers, just as high-income schools benefit from them. Although, there are more factors involved than just providing high-quality teachers monetary incentives to work in low-income schools. Even the best teachers need supplies, and will soon get burned out in classrooms with high student/teacher ratios, outdated text books, poor access to media centers and technology. Low-income students deserve high-class education, but it takes more than just fabulous teachers. Teachers only see students for a few hours a day, and their lives outside of school matter as well.
Maria Aldridge (not verified)

Incentive pay for teachers

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Incentive pay for teachers whose students have outstanding academic performance is an excellent and practical motivation. Even mediocre teachers should get motivated by this opportunity to put forth an extra effort with their less than stellar students. This incentive pay should also encourage teachers to pay more attention and try new things to motivate their "problem students." It may not be the students' fault that they are a problem, or have problems, but the teacher can have an effect on their lives.
Priscilla Gipson (not verified)

Incentive pay should be

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Incentive pay should be given to all teachers if they remain the entire year in the school environment. Why do I say this? The majority of today's students are disrespectful, badly dressed and do not care about teaching and learning. They feel they should get a grade for just showing up and then just socialize. Teachers are frustrated, the veteran teachers are there because they want to be there and have too much to give up at this point. The new teachers are less likely to deal with disrespect and because their self-discipline is not as developed, steadily grow more and more frustrated and quits. Additionally, to retain teachers, enforce discipline. Make parents more responsible for the actions of their children and help them to see the need of becoming more involved in the teaching of their children. High school children especially need guidance and discipline from the home. Children who do not have limits at home come to school believing that the authority of the school is not important. Fix this factor and teacher retention will rise. Another factor that impacts teacher retention is the district and local school administrators attitude toward teachers. Some are down right mean, spiteful and disrespectful of the teaching profession. In addition, there are a lot of reform models that impact the way teachers teach. The reality of what schools do does not meet the expectation of what teachers think should happen and so they QUIT.
Alan Robbins (not verified)

It is a sad commentary that

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It is a sad commentary that educating our young citizens should have financial incentive. Do we really believe that teachers become educators for the fabulous salaries? Parents sen dthe best they have to school and teachers do their best to make sure they receive the best education possible. Incentives mask the bigger problem of historically underpaying educators and is perosnally insulting to imply that I would "do a better job" if I were paid more. The national conversation of higher pay for teachers is long overdue.
Dr. David Smith (not verified)

The devil is in the details.

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The devil is in the details. Awards based on student achievement alone beg the question. A sixth grade teacher may be recognized for what was learned well in previous grades. A growth model may be a more appropriate model to measure teacher effectiveness, but this still requires considerable data about the potential of each student to grow. The survey question is unanserable as stated.
Jo-Anne Kyriannis (not verified)

I do not feel teachers

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I do not feel teachers should be given incentive pay for doing what they are supposed to be doing in the first place. The teaching profession is not easy, no matter where you work. Each of us has obstacles to overcome and challenges to meet. Paying more money to some only devalues the work of others. Furthermore, student improvement is not the result of any single teacher alone. There are a multitude of people responsible for improvement, including parents and teachers from preceding years.
George Falkenhagen (not verified)

It has been my experience in

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It has been my experience in 31 years of teaching that if you had the ability to improve the students learning and control your class your reward was more students that needed help and more students that were harder to control. Teachers should be rewarded for excellant instruction. The problem is finding someone who can recognize good instruction and is not bias.
Sheila DeGraff (not verified)

YES! All the teachers in my

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YES! All the teachers in my building are very talented but seem to have lost their push and creativity to help kids learn. We are teaching a generation of students who have had everything done FOR them - even thinking. The teachers need to think out of the box to find innovative ways to engage these students. I have worked very hard to help our teaching staff make flashcards, say thing dfferently and tune up their teaching styles. Teachers who take the time to do this need, should be rewarded and more money could always help!
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