A four-year study conducted by Mathematica Policy Research on behalf of the U.S. Department of Education shows that teacher performance pay does boost student scores.
Education Week reported the study, conducted from 2011 to 2015, shows student test scores were 1 to 2 percentile points higher in reading and math for students whose teachers received a performance bonus. This is equivalent to about four weeks of additional learning based on the increase.
Other findings in this study include:
- Despite Teacher Incentive Fund (TIF) guidance to make bonuses challenging to receive, most teachers (70 percent) were able to receive the bonus.
- Bonuses varied widely across all four years, the maximum bonus was about four times the average bonus for that year.
- About 40 percent of teachers did not know they were eligible for a performance bonus, even by the fourth year.
- Teachers who knew they were eligible underestimated the maximum amount they could earn and thought the largest amount that could be earned was two-fifths the actual amount available.
Catherine joined the HR Services team in 2015. She assists with the analysis of salary survey data and provides analytical support for consulting services. Catherine taught high school math, including AP statistics, for 12 years in Florida prior to joining HR Services. Catherine has a bachelor’s degree in mathematics with a minor in statistics from Florida Atlantic University.
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