by Dr. Robert Luebke
Senior Fellow, Center for Effective Education, John Locke Foundation
Chad Adelman and Katherine Silberstein of the Edunomics Lab at Georgetown University seem to think so. That’s the topic they tackle in a new Edunomics brief.
Adelman and Silberstein correctly focus the discussion not on averages but on the structure of compensation, that is salary schedules and the absence of a link between pay and performance.
The authors highlight new ways that districts have sought to address the issue of teacher compensation including across -the-board payments, targeted pay and pay tied to other priorities such as extra work or enrollment.
North Carolina schools are awash in Covid dollars, about $6.1 billion to be exact. The federal government has given districts latitude in how they spend money, and many are using it in innovative ways to link pay to performance, enhance retention and keep kids in the classroom.
Local school districts should seriously consider these options. Teacher pay in North Carolina is still tied largely to pay schedules based on years of experience. More importantly, the covid pandemic has shown once again that no two districts are alike. Each district has a different teaching staff, different student population and different challenges.
Isn’t it time we have a system that reflects those differences and gives schools and districts the flexibility to meet their own challenges?