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Haley23 Haley23 is online now
Joined: Jul 2012
Posts: 7,853
Senior Member

Joined: Jul 2012
Posts: 7,853
Senior Member

Old 05-08-2019, 07:54 PM
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How is the merit pay decided on? The test scores?
In the first district, it was based on the amount of growth your building made as a whole on state testing. Apparently the district received a 5 year grant to implement this program, which ended right before I started working there. One of my coworkers said that during the grant, she actually made quite a bit of money. You were supposed to get a bonus at the end of one school year that would then also become your raise for the next school year. Both years I was there, they paid bonuses but stated there wasn't enough money to add that amount as raises for the next year.

The large city district that did merit pay had this super convoluted system where you could get bonuses for different things- being in a hard to fill position, a hard to staff school, a high growth school, a high performance school, being rated highly effective on your eval, etc.

One of the major problems was that teachers had no idea what they could expect to make from year to year. For example, one bonus was given to the 30 highest poverty schools each year, but some schools on the "cusp" were constantly moving on and off the list from year to year. The district also changed what they considered to be hard to staff positions from year to year, and then obviously the test scores were something you couldn't count on either. The teachers main complaint in their strike was that they didn't have a stable income, and some claimed they even had trouble qualifying for things like mortgages because they couldn't prove what they'd make from year to year with a lot of their salary being paid out in these arbitrary "bonuses."
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