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Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.

This report set out to profile the Missouri Career Ladder program by delving beneath the surface and comparing how the program works in practice (based on stakeholder accounts) with how it works in theory (based on published statutes and regulations). The authors found that in many respects the program operates as one might expect. Districts implement rules that tend to follow the state guidelines, with some local tailoring. Teachers of a given experience level must perform a set of allowed activities in order to receive payments at one of the three Career Ladder levels. While Career Ladder provided opportunities to supplement salaries by offering extra pay for extra work, in most cases it would not qualify as a performance incentive program for teachers. The use of an evaluation tool (the PBTE) to promote teachers along the career ladder suggests that it should provide incentives for teachers to improve their practice. However, the authors found little evidence that the Performance-Based Teacher Evaluation (PBTE) is applied rigorously or implemented uniformly in a way that would motivate teachers to raise their performance. Instead, Career Ladder payments were seen as a reward for longevity and completion (with documentation) of a set of allowable activities such as tutoring, after-school activities, or approved professional development. The authors also sought to explain how districts and teachers came to be in the program. They found that district size matters. Finally, a goal of the analysis was to identify the mechanisms by which Career Ladder might produce positive impacts. They identified plausible routes whereby the program could raise student achievement, improve teacher satisfaction/morale, and improve teaching via productivity and composition effects. Teachers reported that they get to know their students better as a result of tutoring them outside of class. Three appendices are included: (1) Data and Methods; (2) Protocol for District-Level Interviews; and (3) Focus Group Protocol. (Contains 2 tables, 3 figures and 11 footnotes.)

Descriptors: School Activities, Incentives, Focus Groups, Academic Achievement, Program Effectiveness, Profiles, Occupational Mobility, Tutoring, Teaching Methods, Theory Practice Relationship, Teaching Experience, Faculty Development, Achievement Gains, Teacher Morale, Job Satisfaction, Teacher Motivation, Interviews, Merit Pay, Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Salaries, Teacher Persistence, School District Size, School Districts, Teacher Evaluation

Mathematica Policy Research, Inc. P.O. Box 2393, Princeton, NJ 08543-2393. Tel: 609-799-3535; Fax: 609-799-0005; e-mail: info[at]mathematica-mpr.com; Web site: http://www.mathematica-mpr.com

Autor: Silman, Timothy; Glazerman, Steven

Fuente: https://eric.ed.gov/?q=a&ft=on&ff1=dtySince_1992&pg=2196&id=ED507471

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