In response to the recent memo sent out by Morcease Beasley regarding the soon to be implemented Race To The Top ‘merit pay’, we wondered, “How do you measure the worth of a teacher?” How will the powers that be determine which teachers will be deemed the “Top 10%” and will therefore receive more pay. Will merit pay encourage or discourage teachers from working in challenging schools? Will teachers of the gifted or AP courses find it easier to earn ‘merit’ pay? Where exactly is this going and who exactly gets to determine who wins the bonuses? Is it fair or right to give out bonuses when most teachers are already underpaid when compared to neighboring counties? Is it fair or right to award bonuses to some when you are in a legal battle over pension contributions?
From: MORCEASE J. BEASLEY Wednesday, December 04, 2013 5:53:26 AM
Subject: RT3 Merit Pay/No-Cost Extension Update
To: Michael L. Thurmond RAMONA TYSON Kathy S. Howe
ALICE A. THOMPSON TEKSHIA M. WARD-SMITH Michael Bell
The following is an update for Merit Pay as shared by the DOE during the RT3 Meeting held in Macon, Georgia on 11-18-13:
- Merit Pay will be allocated to the top 10% of teachers with Teacher Effectiveness Measures (TEMs) and the top 10% of Leaders with Leader Effectiveness Measures (LEMs). The DOE will compile and share the top 10% of TEMs and LEMs with districts once they are calculated.
- The Merit Pay distribution for teachers with the top 10% of TEMs is $2,500 and the Merit Pay distribution for Principals and APs with the top 10% of LEMs is $2300. Parttime persons who qualify for Merit Pay will be allocated an amount equal to the parttime percentage (e.g. $2500 X 49% or $2300 X 49%).
- The district’s RT3 allocation for Merit Pay must be used exhaustively for Merit Pay with Merit Pay distributions to occur by August 30, 2015.
- The district may implement additional Merit Pay criteria if Merit Pay funds are remaining after Merit Pay distribution occurs to the top 10% of TEMs and LEMs. The criteria, rubric, and application process must be developed and documented to be have been widely communicated by Pre-Planning of SY14-15.
- The district may reallocate existing RT3 funds to increase the Merit Pay allocation but may not decrease the current Merit Pay allocation.
- TEMs and LEMs will be calculated for distribution of Merit Pay by June 2015 using the 2013-2014 data. Staff continues to work diligently to ensure all teachers have growth measures.
- Specifics related to the calculation of TEM/LEM and what may happen if a teacher/leader does not have TAPs/LAPs and/or SGP/SLO Growth data have yet to be communicated by the DOE.
- A No-Cost Extension will be allowed for specific RT3 activities to occur beyond September 24, 2014 with the No-Cost Extension application due by June 30, 2014 and funds to be liquidated by June 30, 2015 if approved.
I will keep you posted as more information is shared or discussed.
Morcease J. Beasley, Ed.D.
Executive Director for Curriculum, Instruction, and Professional Learning and the
Office of Federal Programs
Division of Curriculum and Instruction
DeKalb County School District
Setting the Standard for Excellence in Teaching and Learning