Teacher Merit Pay

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July 21, 2011

Merit or Mistake
In today’s society one of the most important factors in selecting a career field is rate of pay. No matter whether the profession maybe, the dollar figure must be within a range that allows the employee to maintain a substantial lifestyle. The debate of teacher pay scales has raged on for years. Many argue that the current pay scale for teachers is a scale which rewards teachers merely for seniority. They argue that the current pay scale overlooks those educators which demonstrate exceptional performance. Teacher merit pay systems have been the most popular suggestions made to remedy the problems seen with the current pay scale. Although the current pay scale may not be completely effective, the idea of teacher merit pay systems should be removed for the debate. Teacher merit pay systems fail to be effective solutions to the issues credited to teacher pay scales. Teacher merit pay systems undermine team work essential to effective education, limit the scope and effectiveness of teacher evaluations, and cripple schools abilities to create successful learning environments. Teacher merit pay systems will mean the difference between creating schools and building educational institutes. Those who believe teacher merit pay systems are the answer argue that these systems would help motivate teachers to perform at a higher level. They believe that offering pay raises for those teachers which demonstrate exceptional educating would greatly improve the level of teaching being put forth inside the classroom. They feel as though the declining of the level of education is the fault of the pay scale which causes those teachers who are above and beyond the standard to lose motivation. Although their point is valid it should be ignored due to its oversights. Merit pay systems would severely undermine the teamwork essential to effective education. The concept of merit pay creates situations where teachers can “piggyback” their ways to higher...
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