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Compensation and Career Path

Districts cannot afford to funnel so many resources into a system that does not reward the best teachers or provide incentives for teachers to improve and contribute.

What is the Challenge?

Traditional teacher-salary structures treat all teachers equally, rewarding teachers for years of experience and course credits whether or not they perform well. Yet research shows that neither experience (after the first three to five years) nor master’s degrees (except degrees in math) are correlated with teaching effectiveness.

Most districts offer little or no additional money to teachers based on the subject they teach (ignoring the competing career opportunities they may have), the need level of their students and schools, their effectiveness, or their willingness and ability to take on additional responsibilities (e.g., lead teacher, teacher mentor, curriculum leader).

“The goal of such a system is to integrate teacher compensation with the overall reform plan, and it involves much more than simply raising salaries across the board or tying salaries to student performance.”
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