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Yohann Cauwenbergh

Student, Business Engineering, Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium

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What do you think of merit-based pay for teachers?

I don't know if the question is still relevant, I haven't followed it until recently but I heard it was quiet a debate at the Presidential election and wanted to know what he TED community thought of this.
Is merit-based pay for teachers a good idea... There are a lot of pros and cons about the topic: Will it help the education of the students (the main goal of the would-be arrangement)? Will the amount of teachers have a positive boost? Will it make the teachers too competitive, lessening the cooperation between them?

Please write your ideas.

(English is not my first language so excuse the grammatical errors and easy language)

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    Nov 26 2012: Here is some scholarly work on this question: http://cpre.wceruw.org/publications/tcsbpa.php Researchers reporting in these articles will have measured the effects of merit pay programs that have been implemented rather than going on the basis of theory alone.
    And here is a briefing paper with some additional links: http://oemanagement.com/data/_files/MeritPay.pdf
    Unfortunately, statements one hears about teachers' motivations and pay are often incorrect or misleading, so I would always verify by looking at a number of sources, doubting particularly arguments made by those who have an obvious bias in the matter.
    Biases may be related to professional interests, political philosophy, or even personal bad experiences in the classroom in a person's youth.

    I agree with those who say that the metric you use will make a difference on the effect you get. One challenge with merit pay is that even before tossing in such a compensation schedule, the most qualified teachers tend to go to schools with students who are easiest to bring to high standards of educational achievement. Schools with students who come to school with a lot of challenges that making learning difficult have a hard time drawing- but more than that retaining- strong teachers.

    Metrics that compensate teachers based on how well their students perform on measures of achievement would make this problem even more serious.
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      Nov 26 2012: "doubting particularly arguments made by those who have an obvious bias in the matter."


      Would teachers be included in those with an obvious bias?

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