Archive for the ‘POE’ Category

Officials Testify About Performance Pay In Higher Education & Career Technology

September 19, 2007

OKLAHOMA CITY (Sept. 18, 2007) — Performance pay plans are already in place and working in Oklahoma colleges and CareerTech schools, according to testimony from officials at a Tuesday hearing at the state Capitol.

Tuesday’s hearing was the third in a series of House Education Committee meetings to study performance pay for Oklahoma’s teachers. The hearings come just as performance pay gains momentum nationwide. A story on the front page of Tuesday’s Washington Post pointed out that performance pay has widespread support among parents across the country.

“Clearly, performance pay works. As we heard today, it’s already working in some colleges and universities, and at Career Tech schools,” said Oklahoma Speaker Lance Cargill (R-Harrah). “Performance pay promotes teacher growth and confidence, creates a climate of continuous improvement and increases student achievement. If it’s working for CareerTech and at colleges, then it can work in common education too.”

“The bottom line of our efforts is that good teachers deserve to be rewarded for their work,” said state Rep. Tad Jones, R-Claremore, who has chaired the series of hearings. “I think we’re beginning to see that a performance pay system is a realistic and necessary reform for our public schools in Oklahoma.”

Lawmakers heard from several CareerTech officials who shared information about performance pay systems already in place within that system.

Lindel Fields, deputy superintendent of the Tri-County Technological Center in Bartlesville, said a performance pay plan there recognizes star performers, boosts confidence among instructors and focuses on student success.

“Teachers are proud to be rewarded for their individual performance. They want to be recognized,” said Field. “When you reward them individually they stand a little bit taller, they are a little prouder. There’s no reason education can’t reward excellence the same as the business world does.”

James Machell, dean of the University of Central Oklahoma’s College of Education, testified that five of Oklahoma’s regional colleges and universities have some form of performance pay.

“It has worked,” said Machell. “Teachers know who the bad teachers are, and they don’t want them receiving the same pay. I think the keys are multiple measurements of performance, and stakeholder involvement.”

Cargill said he was also encouraged by testimony from education experts that performance pay plans work when they use a variety of factors to measure teacher success.

\u003c/font\>\u003c/p\>\n\n\u003cp\>\u003cfont size\u003d\”2\” face\u003d\”Arial\”\>\u003cspan style\u003d\”font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Arial\”\>"This was more validation for the kind of performance\npay plan we seek, a model that rewards excellent teachers based on a mix of\nfactors," said Cargill. "We're seeing a consensus emerge that\nperformance pay works when it is done the right way."\u003c/span\>\u003c/font\>\u003c/p\>\n\n\u003cp\>\u003cfont size\u003d\”2\” face\u003d\”Arial\”\>\u003cspan style\u003d\”font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Arial\”\> \u003c/span\>\u003c/font\>\u003c/p\>\n\n\u003cp\>\u003cfont size\u003d\”2\” face\u003d\”Arial\”\>\u003cspan style\u003d\”font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Arial\”\>Two experts from the North Carolina Center\nfor Teacher Quality testified about their research into the do's and don'ts of\nperformance pay.\u003c/span\>\u003c/font\>\u003c/p\>\n\n\u003cp\>\u003cfont size\u003d\”2\” face\u003d\”Arial\”\>\u003cspan style\u003d\”font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Arial\”\> \u003c/span\>\u003c/font\>\u003c/p\>\n\n\u003cp\>\u003cfont size\u003d\”2\” face\u003d\”Arial\”\>\u003cspan style\u003d\”font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Arial\”\>"Not all teachers are going to excel in every\ndimension, but if teachers have access to a variety of avenues to show\nachievement then you're really going to promote excellence," said Anthony\nCody, a teacher from California,\nwho co-authored a report from the Center called "Teacher Solutions."\u003c/span\>\u003c/font\>\u003c/p\>\n\n\u003cp\>\u003cfont size\u003d\”2\” face\u003d\”Arial\”\>\u003cspan style\u003d\”font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Arial\”\> \u003c/span\>\u003c/font\>\u003c/p\>\n\n\u003cp\>\u003cfont size\u003d\”2\” face\u003d\”Arial\”\>\u003cspan style\u003d\”font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Arial\”\>"We know the current pay system in Oklahoma has remained essentially the same\nfor most of our state's history, and it's doing nothing to boost teacher\nsuccess and student achievement," said Cargill. "It's time to move\nforward with a substantial performance pay reform."\u003c/span\>\u003c/font\>\u003c/p\>\n\n\u003cp\>\u003cfont size\u003d\”2\” face\u003d\”Arial\”\>\u003cspan style\u003d\”font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Arial\”\> \u003c/span\>\u003c/font\>\u003c/p\>\n\n\u003cp\>\u003cfont size\u003d\”2\” face\u003d\”Arial\”\>\u003cspan style\u003d\”font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Arial\”\>In the series of hearings that began in August, lawmakers\nhave heard from experts that studied performance pay plans demonstrating\nresults — as well as from teachers who support performance pay. Last week,\nProfessional Oklahoma Educators officials shared a survey of members that\nshowed strong support for performance pay. Nearly 70 percent of the teachers\nwho responded to the survey prefer some form of performance pay system, said\nGinger Tinney, POE Executive Director.”,1] ); //”This was more validation for the kind of performance pay plan we seek, a model that rewards excellent teachers based on a mix of factors,” said Cargill. “We’re seeing a consensus emerge that performance pay works when it is done the right way.”

Two experts from the North Carolina Center for Teacher Quality testified about their research into the do’s and don’ts of performance pay.

“Not all teachers are going to excel in every dimension, but if teachers have access to a variety of avenues to show achievement then you’re really going to promote excellence,” said Anthony Cody, a teacher from California, who co-authored a report from the Center called “Teacher Solutions.”

“We know the current pay system in Oklahoma has remained essentially the same for most of our state’s history, and it’s doing nothing to boost teacher success and student achievement,” said Cargill. “It’s time to move forward with a substantial performance pay reform.”

In the series of hearings that began in August, lawmakers have heard from experts that studied performance pay plans demonstrating results — as well as from teachers who support performance pay. Last week, Professional Oklahoma Educators officials shared a survey of members that showed strong support for performance pay. Nearly 70 percent of the teachers who responded to the survey prefer some form of performance pay system, said Ginger Tinney, POE Executive Director.

The next hearing is scheduled for Sept. 25.

Oklahoma House Committee Holds Second Hearing on Performance Pay for Oklahoma Teachers

September 12, 2007

OKLAHOMA CITY (Sept. 11, 2007) — A Minnesota teachers’ union official told Oklahoma lawmakers Tuesday that a performance pay plan in that state has encouraged collaboration among teachers, and that union members worked with lawmakers and the Minnesota governor to develop the plan.

“We view performance pay as a generational opportunity for our members and for public schools in Minnesota,” said Randi Kirchner, Professional Pay Systems Coordinator with “Education Minnesota,” the teachers’ union in that state. Kirchner’s testimony was part of a hearing on performance pay held by the House Education Committee. The hearing was the second in a series of five hearings that will run through Oct. 9. (Click here for audio)

In addition to Kirchner’s testimony, lawmakers heard supportive and positive testimony from officials with Professional Oklahoma Educators and others.

“I was encouraged by the support we heard today from teachers, administrators and school board members,” said Speaker Lance Cargill, R-Harrah. “In particular, the Minnesota example shows the willingness of teachers to embrace performance pay reforms.”

“Oklahoma has literally spent tens of billions of dollars on education over the past few decades, with essentially the same pay system in place for teachers for a century,” continued Cargill. “We’ve practiced the politics of ‘the impossible’ for 100 years. Now it’s time to move forward with practical reforms and the politics of ‘the possible.’ Our kids deserve nothing less.”

Cargill also pointed to testimony from Professional Oklahoma Educators officials, which conducted a survey of its members that showed strong support for performance pay. Nearly 70 percent of the 750 Oklahoma teachers from across the state in the survey prefer some form of performance pay system, said Ginger Tinney, POE Executive Director.

“Teachers feel they should earn more if they do better work,” said Tinney.

According to Tinney, a Fort Gibson teacher summed up many teachers’ sentiments when she wrote, “I’m tired of working hard and watching mediocrity getting the same pay.” (Click here for audio)

Cargill said he was encouraged by Tuesday’s hearing.

“Performance pay just makes sense,” Cargill said.” There are some who seem to believe there can be no accountability before there is more money. But most Oklahomans don’t see it as an either, or choice. They want high investment in education and accountability. There shouldn’t be a false choice between pay raises and reforms. We can have both. Oklahomans deserve both.”

House Education Committee Chairman Tad Jones, who chaired Tuesday’s hearing, said he felt it began to lay the groundwork for a fair and effective performance pay system for Oklahoma teachers.

“Oklahomans support the common-sense idea that teachers are professionals and should be paid like professionals,” said Jones, R-Claremore. “Good teachers deserve to be rewarded for their hard work.”

Cargill, Jones and House Republican lawmakers first signaled they would pursue a comprehensive performance-based pay system for Oklahoma teachers after lawmakers completed a $4,800 pay raise commitment for teachers over the past three years. Part of this year’s state budget agreement included an additional $400 on top of an already-agreed to $600 pay raise – with the additional funds weighted toward veteran teachers or those with advanced degrees.