Teachers in Nashville (MNEA) voted overwhelmingly (70% in favor) to participate in what is termed a "definitive" study of merit pay and bonuses for teachers.
Vanderbilt University has $10 million to fund the study and to provide merit pay for the approximately 300 participating teachers. See previous post.
The study is intended to determine through scientific and statistical analysis whether merit/incentive pay improves teaching and student outcomes as measured by test scores.
"Many people from a national standpoint are moving forward with the idea of incentive pay without understanding the impact on student learning," Matthew Springer, director of the center and a professor at Vanderbilt, said late last week.
Hopefully, the study will provide answers about the impact of incentive pay for teachers on student learning. Does merit pay have an effect? If so, what is the effect?