Home | In The Classroom | Should teachers be paid according to performance? Vox pop

Should teachers be paid according to performance? Vox pop


The debate over whether high-performing teachers should be paid more is an evergreen yet vexed issue. Indeed, politician Mark Latham recently floated the idea in NSW parliament. "Why aren't the best teachers, [who are] adding value in the classroom, given performance bonuses for their magnificent contribution?" he asked.

Education Review took to George Street in Sydney's CBD to find out what people thought. After listening, it was clear that determining who is 'performing' might not be as straightforward as one might think.

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  1. Yes they should the same as politicians

  2. I’d like to see good teachers rewarded, and bad teachers run out of the industry. It seems that the education system is like a sheltered workshop for some teachers. They wouldn’t survive in any other industry, but they somehow manage to stay employed and making a nice dollar – regardless of their performance.

    • I think the idea is great, but it needs to be executed in the right way. We don’t want teachers to be paid more based on how many A’s they would get. We want teachers to be rewarded based on how well they perform. They could be getting a student from a C to a B. Or influencing a student on taking a particular career path or genuinely making a difference in their life.

      I agree that bad teachers are in the industry for all the wrong reasons. They are ruining student’s will to learn and unlock their full potential.

  3. Possibly if it’s under consideration for teachers, then why not for politicians as well?

    Or at least, the same pay conditions as the constituents they represent….

  4. We learn best as a team… Teachers value collaboration highly, sharing what worked well and what hasn’t worked. We work together to ensure students have the best possible learning experience. If you are going to pay teacher based on student performance, the sharing of ideas will cease as teachers will be competing with each other. This is extremely detrimental to the whole profession.

    • Agreed Greg! There’s a surgence of collaboration teams in motion and we have meetings every term with other teachers – PLTs (Professional Learning Teams). We base our collaboration on the ‘Learning by Doing’ text written by Gavin Grift and Colin Sloper. In one of our Professional Development workshops at the beginning of the school year, Gavin Grift worked us through the program and now our school has adopted a lower school sharing and upper school sharing and planning collaborative environment. This allows us to work with the teachers in the year level below and above, to make sure that our work is progressive and aligns with the curriculum while encompassing our student needs. It’s a work in progress, but so far, so good.

  5. Pay for performance. Yes great idea.
    Some Doctors need to kill people to nearly get kicked out of their profession.
    Some Engineers design poor multiple story buildings, and still get to go to work, day after day.
    Some Policemen are on the take, and they are still working.
    Some Dentists cause more repeat work in our mouths without us knowing, and get away with it.
    Some Nurses are abusing their patients, and get away with it.
    Some Politicians are lining their pockets through contracts to mates, and creating a comfortable exit strategy.
    Let’s single out the teaching profession to be perfect by dusting out all diversity.

  6. How to do you pay for performance for teachers of special needs children? Happy Parents….

    How do you gauge the value adding that a teacher does everyday in a classroom?

    How do you pay teachers for hours and hours of work they do behind the scenes, oh that’s right you don’t.
    Just another person bashing teachers and expecting miracles.

    Maybe you could pay parents for preparing their child for school. We could base this on the child being attentive, having the basic equipment, being respectful to peers and teachers.

  7. How many industries have performance based pay?
    Is it ever effective in building morale or establishing higher standards of delivery?
    Who determines who is better and how?
    Does a teacher based in a low socioeconomic area have the same advantages as a teacher from a wealthy area in terms of who they teach?
    How do you measure this equitably?

    • Exactly Stavros the teachers workload is huge what with having to teach manners, respect, co operation, self worth, empathy, perseverance, resilience and managing to fit the huge curriculum in there somewhere. They are having to parent, counsel deal with cyber bullying, school yard bullying parents bullying and all the extra curricular activities that take students away from the classroom and having to catch them up. How can you honestly judge who deserves more pay. Maybe parents should do their job so we can do ours and then maybe look at performance pay for teachers when they can actually teach.

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