FL: Merit Pay (Still) Doesn't Work
Yes, and in other news, the sun is expected to rise in the East tomorrow.
So, Florida has a merit pay system. In fact, Florida has tried to implement merit pay for quite a while. Of course, there are issues:
The design and implementation of merit pay faces several key challenges. First, student outcomes are difficult to define and measure. Second, the contributions of individual teachers to student outcomes are difficult to disentangle from student background and prior achievement. The analysis shows serious deficiencies in several measures of teacher performance. Policy makers should be wary of adapting any measure without careful analysis of its properties and a plan to monitor how it is performing.
That's from a RAND Corporation study of Florida merit pay published in 2007.
|Florida: Why drain the swamp when you can sell swampland?|
So maybe that system wasn't so great. Florida's leaders maintained their childlike faith in competitive test-based merit pay, and by 2011, they were ready with a great new law to enshrine it. Flanked by students brought in to serve as props, Governor Rick Scott signed the bill into law. It tied teacher pay directly to test results. In fact, it tied teacher job security directly to test results for all new teachers. Because the bill was suppose to help with recruiting. Because lots of new teachers say, "You know, I'd go work in Florida, but I hate the idea of having job security. I want a job where I know I can be fired every single year." Not only does the system rest on the widely-debunked VAM scores, but the majority of teachers get to be judged based on subject areas they don't even teach ("Don't like your pay check, CURMUDGUCATION: FL: Merit Pay (Still) Doesn't Work: