Kate Walsh, president of the National Council on Teacher Quality, makes The Case Against Comparability on Education Gadfly. The proposed law requiring districts to equalize spending on teacher salaries will encourage bean counting, not quality, she argues.
Teacher quality is perhaps the greatest challenge facing these struggling school districts. The House bill does in fact include some good provisions for addressing these challenges, such as premium pay to attract teachers to high-need schools and subject areas; better mentoring and induction for new teachers; performance pay; and longitudinal data systems that will allow tracking of teacher effectiveness, to name just a few.
Many urban districts have a few schools with poor and middle-class students and a lot of schools with nothing but poor students. Shifting experienced teachers to the ultra-poor schools risks driving the middle class out of the public schools completely.