Tiffany Johnson is the beneficiary of the Washington, D.C., merit pay system.

Washington, D.C., public school teacher Tiffany Johnson is a “highly effective” educator — and saw her pay jump to $87,000 from $63,000 this past year as a result.

“When I was making way less, I was entertaining the idea of going to a neighboring school district,” said Johnson, 29, a special-education teacher. “I’m not going anywhere now.”

She is the poster child for Mayor Bloomberg’s plan to reward teacher performance with raises, a system instituted in Washington by education reformer Michelle Rhee.

Washington has in place what many consider the nation’s most advanced merit-pay system for public school teachers, offering instructors rated “highly effective” for two years in a row up to a $27,000 salary bump and bonuses.

Bloomberg’s vision for public schools is strikingly similar. Last week, he proposed offering $20,000 raises to teachers deemed outstanding in consecutive years.

The mayor dangled the cash to pressure the union into accepting teacher ratings.

Instructor assessments are central to the Washington program, which started in 2010.

Under the capital’s IMPACT system, teachers who garner the lowest rating, based largely on test scores and formal observations, can lose their jobs.

With that stick comes some high-priced carrots.

“Highly effective” teachers get annual bonuses ranging from $3,000 to $25,000.

While 85% of parents agreed the school system was “on the right track for student achievement” in a recent survey, union officials argue IMPACT punishes teachers .

“The IMPACT system in and of itself is a stick as opposed to a helping tool,” said Nathan Saunders, president of the Washington Teachers’ Union.

Sources: Read More


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