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NYC Educator responds skeptically (to put it mildly) to New York's new merit pay plan, under which teachers in high-needs schools can earn up to $3,000 in extra pay, depending on test scores:

Let's say I move to a high needs school and actually receive the top bonus one year. After taxes and union dues, I'm looking at $1500 extra bucks. Divide that by 24 pay cycles and you're looking at $62.50 a pay cycle - and that's the most you can receive!
Does anybody at the DOE, in the press, at the education think tanks and at City Hall really think $62.50 a pay cycle is an incentive for anything?
Because if they do, than they must think teachers are even dumber than they already seem to think we are.

If the powers that be really wanted to keep good teachers in the system, he says, they'd offer up some "real reform," and he has some suggestions as to what that might consist of.

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Interesting! Few people like to discuss the dysfunctional side of merit pay. Dysfunctionalities becomes more evident in inner city classrooms where these variables and factors can multiply themselves. Notwithstanding, students plagued by their circumstances are often preoccupied with issues that extend beyond the classroom. Do educrats take time to consider the motivational aspects that impact how students in low-income schools perform? NCLB is often the furthest thing from their mind. It is important that we become realistic about the issues that greatly impact these schools as throwing money at problems does not make them go away. Instructional considerations are only one piece of a complex puzzle missing many parts.

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