Two Questions Provoked by Teacher-Pay Story

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To the Editor:

Thanks for the recent article about a so-called teacher panel calling for pay raises for K-12 teachers who increase student performance ("Teacher Panel Calls for Overhaul of Pay Across Profession," April 18, 2007). The story was a welcome joke at one school’s brief lunch break, providing an entertaining game focusing on “Who is a teacher?” and “How does the panel’s report propose to measure increased student achievement?”

First, the lunch gang estimated that only seven of the 18 panel members are full-time K-12 teachers. The others are employed as coaches, community college teachers, coordinators, librarians, and facilitators, among other positions, and one is retired. Second, the report does not tell us how increased student achievement is to be measured for purposes of raising teacher pay.

So where is the beef in this story? The beef appears to be embedded in a haze around two questions: Why did the panel’s sponsors, the Joyce, George Gund, and Stuart foundations, pay good money for such a hustle, and why did Education Week run an article on it? Only one guess per person!

Miles Myers
Senior Researcher
Institute for Standards, Curricula,
and Assessment
Los Angeles, Calif.

Vol. 26, Issue 34, Page 33

Published in Print: April 25, 2007, as Two Questions Provoked By Teacher-Pay Story
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