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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

Study: Teacher bonuses raise results

Teacher performance pay is linked to a slightly better math and reading results in a new federal study reports Liana Loewus in Education Week.

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Mathematica Policy Research evaluated Teacher Incentive Fund grants in low-income schools. The new report finds that students’ math and reading scores were 1 to 2 percentile points higher in schools that offered pay-for-performance bonuses, “the equivalent of about four weeks of additional learning.”

Although it was supposed to be difficult to qualify for a bonus, 70 percent of teachers received extra pay.  The average bonus was about $2,000, but the amounts varied widely.

The Gates Foundation is shifting its focus away from evaluating teachers’ effectiveness, Bill Gates announced in October. However, 39 states now use students’ test score growth and other objective measures to evaluate teachers, writes Loewus.

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