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Misfit Structures & Lost Opportunities

The Urgent Case for Restructuring Teacher Compensation and Career Paths

This paper explores how to rethink compensation and career paths to attract and retain the most effective teachers. This paper details two urgent reasons for reform—misfit structures of current teacher salary schedules, and lost opportunities to impact student achievement—focusing specifically on salary compensation for teachers.

Misfit Structures & Lost Opportunities (PDF)

This white paper is part of a series of publications and tools devoted to Teacher Compensation and Career Path. The rest include:

  • Teacher Compensation Workshop: This "do-it-yourself" workshop brings stakeholders together to explore the costs and implications of different compensation structures. The workshop includes pre-reading materials, a narrated Powerpoint presentation, and all the items needed to play the interactive exercise "What Price is Right?"
  • Rethinking the Value Proposition to Improve Teaching Effectiveness: This white paper looks at the whole package of what school systems offer teachers, and examines how these offerings influence the attraction, development, retention, and motivation of a high-performing teaching force.
  • Strategic Design of Teacher Compensation: This series of memos explores typical goals of compensation redesign and implications for five main design considerations: base salary, district priority incentives, school role, rewards and responsibilities, and fiscal sustainability.
  • First Steps: What School Systems Can Do to Reform Teacher Compensation and Career Path Right Now: This action-oriented brief outlines four key steps districts can take this year to move toward a future vision of the teaching job. Backed by ERS research and experience, these steps will have a positive impact on student outcomes, require little or no new investment, and lay the foundations for building a highly effective teaching force.
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