7/26/2008

Merit Pay? For Me?

Good grief! As a 22 year veteran of the public education system, doing just about any certified job there is, DON'T even think about giving me more money if my students do well on required assessments.
Better idea alert! To State Representative Andy Olsen: PAY THE STUDENTS to do better on standardized assessments. I'm not in this job for the money...obviously. It's the SERVICE that does it for me. But, good grief. I pretty much work as hard as anyone can work...reading, thinking, planning, engaging, sharing, inspiring, laughing, recording, dancing, pleasing, assessing, asking, begging, reasoning, crying, getting up each morning to do it all over again. Don't think that I'll work any harder for additional monies. I WORK MY ASS OFF for my students, district, parents, and employers! I would rather earn my current pay but have more support in recognizing my students for their work.
For just a second, consider this: With the extreme wide-range of needs and attitudes of my students, why not set up a system that directly benefits and molds their personal achievement an motivation. I sing, dance, buy trinkets, represent, extend my time for, give to, and deliver the most efficient lessons and units imagineable...but, if you think about it, it means absolutely NOTHING if students do not care to try.
Money to the kids! Yeah, that's right. Keep the pay system for educators in Oregon as-is, based on individual district agreements. Take that money and shove it into kids' pockets.

4 comments:

Vita said...

Ha. Money for the kids. Outrageous, but a better idea than merit pay for the teachers. How in the world would you measure merit? On their grades? Just because you have smart kids in your class you get more money? Doesn't sound fair to the people trying to teach the OTHER kids. Sounds no more effective than the stupid idea of No Child Left Behind, which punishes whole schools for having special needs students.

BoggyWoggy said...

No, it'd be based on previous scores and percentage increases, identified through a series of student goal-setting, interviews, parent involvement, and teacher input. The students would be EMPOWERED to grow for more reasons than just to make a frickin' school district look good.
However, there are many methodologies we are using today that directly address low-functioning students. It's intense and I LOVE it, as it's 50% of my job this year...using data, collected often, to modify programs we're using as interventions for targeted kids. Quite the job, I tell you! I'm learning more and more each year.

P.J. said...

I'd take take the money and just turn around and use it on the kids. That way it works out in the end, no?

BoggyWoggy said...

Well, sort of...but, with the way the tax system is set up, I can only write off a very small portion of my annual expenses. The increased pay increases my taxes, but when I donate the money, I get nothing. One year, I donated moe than $2400 to my own classroom supplies...