Giving apples to the right teachers
Let's say you own a real estate company. Some of your employees have great people skills plus they work really hard, with the result that they sell dozens of properties every year, while other employees barely manage to scrape by with five or six properties a year. Regardless, you decide to pay them all the same basic salary, although you do give very large bonuses to the employees with blue eyes or first names that start with the letter "J".
It doesn't make a lot of sense, does it? Nevertheless, this is more or less the way most North American teacher compensation systems work.
A new study (which in fact confirms an existing body of research) finds that there is little or no relationship between teachers' experience or qualifications and how much their students learn - even though teachers' pay is based on these factors. Click here for a newspaper article about the study and here for a podcast interview with the principal researcher.
Teacher effectiveness is the most important school-based factor when it comes to student achievement. Teachers should be compensated according to their effectiveness and not on the basis of irrelevant characteristics like experience or qualifications. H/T to A