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313823021 teacher-leadership-and-pay

This document outlines a new vision for teacher compensation and career pathways in North Carolina proposed by a team of eight accomplished teachers. The team conducted research and engaged colleagues across the state. Their vision is based on six principles, including that compensation should value teaching as a profession, reward leadership and innovation, and focus on teachers who spread expertise to others. The team asserts that the current single salary schedule is outdated and that North Carolina needs a more nuanced approach to support ongoing school improvement.

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Transforming teachers’ careers
and compensation in North
Carolina: A new vision from some of
our state’s best teachers
TeacherSolutions team
d
Karyn Dickerson ! Taylor Milburn ! Doyle Nicholson
Dave Orphal ! Ben Owens ! Sabrina Peacock
Joanna Schimizzi ! Nicole Smith
August 2016
	
  
313823021 teacher-leadership-and-pay
 
	
  
	
  
2
Preface
More	
  than	
  half	
  a	
  century	
  ago,	
  the	
  single	
  salary	
  schedule	
  for	
  teachers	
  was	
  designed	
  with	
  good	
  reasons	
  in	
  mind:	
  
to	
  promote	
  gender	
  and	
  racial	
  pay	
  equity,	
  to	
  protect	
  teachers	
  from	
  administrators	
  who	
  might	
  make	
  capricious	
  
employment	
  and	
  pay	
  decisions,	
  and	
  to	
  encourage	
  teachers	
  to	
  pursue	
  advanced	
  academic	
  degrees.	
  	
  
Like	
  the	
  dusty	
  blackboards	
  still	
  found	
  in	
  some	
  classrooms,	
  the	
  single	
  salary	
  schedule	
  has	
  served	
  its	
  purposes,	
  
met	
  its	
  goals,	
  and	
  outlived	
  its	
  usefulness.	
  
With	
  challenges	
  and	
  opportunities	
  before	
  us	
  that	
  were	
  unimaginable	
  even	
  ten	
  years	
  ago,	
  our	
  public	
  schools	
  
need	
  a	
  far	
  more	
  nuanced	
  approach	
  to	
  teachers’	
  career	
  pathways	
  and	
  professional	
  compensation.	
  This	
  report	
  
comes	
  at	
  time	
  when	
  a	
  steady	
  stream	
  of	
  research	
  evidence	
  has	
  shown	
  how	
  effective	
  teaching	
  and	
  powerful	
  
student	
  learning	
  are	
  not	
  primarily	
  accomplishments	
  of	
  singular	
  teachers	
  but	
  rather	
  “social	
  endeavors	
  that	
  are	
  
best	
  achieved	
  and	
  improved	
  through	
  trusting	
  relationships	
  and	
  teamwork,	
  instead	
  of	
  competition	
  and	
  a	
  focus	
  
on	
  individual	
  prowess.”	
  
As	
  this	
  report	
  was	
  being	
  finalized,	
  the	
  NC	
  General	
  Assembly	
  approved	
  a	
  budget	
  that	
  would	
  soon	
  increase	
  the	
  
average	
  annual	
  teacher	
  salary	
  in	
  the	
  state	
  to	
  more	
  than	
  $50,000—a	
  much	
  needed	
  boost.	
  But	
  many	
  teachers,	
  
especially	
  the	
  most	
  experienced	
  ones,	
  are	
  “left	
  out”	
  of	
  these	
  investments.	
  And	
  the	
  proposed	
  additional	
  
bonuses	
  for	
  those	
  who	
  produce	
  higher	
  student	
  tests	
  mirror	
  eerily	
  the	
  failed	
  merit	
  pay	
  plans	
  of	
  the	
  past.	
  	
  
I	
  believe	
  this	
  report,	
  written	
  by	
  a	
  team	
  of	
  accomplished	
  North	
  Carolina	
  teachers,	
  offers	
  powerful	
  solutions	
  to	
  
long-­‐standing	
  problems	
  of	
  how	
  to	
  pay	
  and	
  recognize	
  classroom	
  practitioners.	
  Their	
  report	
  can	
  help	
  bridge	
  
the	
  long-­‐standing	
  communication	
  gap	
  between	
  the	
  makers	
  of	
  school	
  policy	
  and	
  the	
  teaching	
  professionals	
  
who	
  put	
  that	
  policy	
  into	
  action.	
  This	
  report	
  makes	
  it	
  clear	
  that	
  teacher	
  leaders	
  understand	
  the	
  need	
  for	
  school	
  
reform—including	
  well-­‐crafted	
  incentive	
  pay	
  plans.	
  Most	
  importantly,	
  they	
  know	
  how	
  to	
  apply	
  the	
  research	
  
evidence	
  on	
  what	
  matters	
  most	
  for	
  student	
  achievement	
  along	
  with	
  their	
  much-­‐needed	
  insider	
  school	
  and	
  
community	
  knowledge	
  to	
  help	
  prevent	
  well-­‐intentioned	
  reforms	
  from	
  going	
  awry.	
  	
  
These	
  eight	
  teachers	
  began	
  their	
  investigation	
  in	
  late	
  January	
  2016,	
  working	
  together	
  in	
  the	
  CTQ	
  
Collaboratory,	
  their	
  virtual	
  community.	
  Their	
  deliberations	
  often	
  continued	
  late	
  into	
  the	
  evenings	
  after	
  their	
  
intensely	
  busy	
  teaching	
  days.	
  They	
  examined	
  the	
  findings	
  of	
  dozens	
  of	
  studies	
  and	
  engaged	
  in	
  deep	
  online	
  
conversations	
  as	
  well	
  as	
  rapid-­‐fire	
  Twitter	
  chats	
  with	
  hundreds	
  of	
  teaching	
  colleagues.	
  This	
  report	
  represents	
  
the	
  first	
  of	
  a	
  number	
  of	
  approaches	
  this	
  CTQ	
  TeacherSolutions	
  team	
  seeks	
  to	
  take	
  to	
  advance	
  the	
  teaching	
  
profession	
  that	
  their	
  students	
  deserve.	
  Read,	
  debate,	
  and	
  consider	
  the	
  wisdom	
  of	
  those	
  who	
  teach	
  our	
  state’s	
  
children	
  every	
  day.	
  
	
  
Barnett	
  Berry,	
  CEO	
  &	
  Partner	
  
	
  
Center	
  for	
  Teaching	
  Quality	
  
August	
  2016	
  
 
	
  
	
  
3
Executive summary
The what and why of this report
This	
  report	
  is	
  about	
  what	
  works	
  best	
  for	
  our	
  North	
  Carolina	
  students,	
  and	
  what	
  kind	
  of	
  teaching	
  profession	
  is	
  
needed	
  to	
  fuel	
  school	
  improvement.	
  It	
  is	
  about	
  the	
  future	
  of	
  teacher	
  career	
  pathways	
  and	
  professional	
  
compensation.	
  Both	
  the	
  principles	
  and	
  recommendations	
  have	
  been	
  assembled	
  by	
  eight	
  highly	
  accomplished	
  
teachers	
  from	
  across	
  our	
  state	
  who	
  engaged	
  in	
  an	
  intensive	
  two-­‐month	
  study	
  of	
  the	
  research	
  evidence	
  and	
  
analysis	
  of	
  their	
  own	
  teaching	
  experiences.	
  These	
  classroom	
  experts	
  worked	
  with	
  hundreds	
  of	
  their	
  
colleagues	
  from	
  across	
  North	
  Carolina	
  to	
  reach	
  their	
  conclusions.	
  They	
  found	
  that	
  more	
  than	
  anything	
  else,	
  
teachers	
  want	
  more	
  opportunities	
  to	
  spread	
  effective	
  teaching	
  practices—with	
  the	
  ultimate	
  goal	
  of	
  helping	
  all	
  
students	
  learn.	
  And	
  for	
  them,	
  this	
  new	
  compensation	
  system	
  should	
  do	
  just	
  that.	
  	
  
Assertions and findings
The	
  team’s	
  vision	
  for	
  the	
  future—represented	
  by	
  specific	
  solutions	
  they	
  have	
  designed—is	
  based	
  on	
  six	
  
principles	
  they	
  identified.	
  The	
  principles	
  include:	
  
1. Teacher	
  compensation	
  must	
  begin	
  with	
  sound	
  base	
  pay	
  that	
  values	
  teaching	
  as	
  a	
  profession	
  and	
  
includes	
  additional	
  salary	
  and	
  bonuses	
  that	
  fuel	
  leadership,	
  innovation,	
  and	
  creativity;	
  
2. The	
  evaluation	
  process	
  for	
  identifying,	
  recognizing,	
  and	
  rewarding	
  teacher	
  leaders	
  must	
  be	
  
transparent	
  and	
  trustworthy;	
  
3. Informal	
  (as	
  well	
  as	
  formal)	
  leadership	
  roles	
  must	
  be	
  valued—and	
  incentives	
  for	
  leading	
  cannot	
  be	
  
limited	
  to	
  financial	
  ones;	
  
4. Leadership	
  opportunities	
  must	
  be	
  available	
  for	
  all	
  teachers,	
  not	
  just	
  a	
  few	
  individuals;	
  
5. Incentives	
  and	
  rewards,	
  like	
  those	
  in	
  top-­‐performing	
  nations,	
  must	
  focus	
  on	
  teachers	
  who	
  spread	
  
their	
  expertise	
  to	
  others;	
  and	
  	
  
6. School	
  districts	
  must	
  create	
  the	
  right	
  working	
  conditions—including	
  principals	
  who	
  know	
  how	
  to	
  
cultivate	
  teacher	
  leaders—in	
  order	
  to	
  recruit	
  and	
  retain	
  classroom	
  experts	
  in	
  high-­‐need	
  schools.	
  	
  
Our	
  proposal	
  for	
  teachers	
  moving	
  forward	
  in	
  their	
  careers	
  on	
  the	
  basis	
  of	
  the	
  skills	
  they	
  can	
  demonstrate	
  is	
  
based	
  on	
  the	
  following	
  pillars:	
  
Professional	
  base	
  pay	
  (and	
  if	
  teachers	
  do	
  not	
  deserve	
  a	
  professionally	
  based	
  minimum	
  salary,	
  they	
  
should	
  not	
  be	
  teaching);	
  
Demonstration	
  of	
  a	
  variety	
  of	
  expert	
  skills	
  based	
  on	
  a	
  well-­‐designed	
  and	
  more	
  comprehensive	
  
teaching	
  evaluation	
  system;	
  and	
  
Leadership	
  pathways	
  (both	
  formal	
  and	
  informal	
  roles)	
  for	
  all	
  teachers.	
  
Finally,	
  the	
  report	
  includes	
  some	
  key	
  considerations	
  necessary	
  to	
  ensure	
  teachers	
  have	
  the	
  appropriate	
  tools	
  
to	
  support	
  student	
  learning,	
  which	
  includes	
  time	
  to	
  lead	
  and	
  administrators	
  who	
  support	
  them	
  in	
  doing	
  so.	
  	
  
	
  
	
  
 
	
  
	
  
4
Introduction
“Loss	
  of	
  Teacher	
  of	
  Year	
  to	
  private	
  industry	
  is	
  heartbreaking,”	
  blared	
  a	
  recent	
  Mooresville	
  Tribune	
  headline.	
  
After	
  18	
  years	
  of	
  “great”	
  teaching,	
  Allen	
  Stephens	
  (2015-­‐16	
  Teacher	
  of	
  the	
  Year	
  in	
  the	
  Mooresville	
  Graded	
  
School	
  District)	
  has	
  left	
  the	
  classroom	
  to	
  work	
  in	
  the	
  private	
  sector.	
  This	
  trend	
  is	
  one	
  many	
  administrators	
  
now	
  say	
  is	
  “snowballing”	
  across	
  North	
  Carolina.	
  Our	
  colleague	
  left	
  teaching	
  primarily	
  due	
  to	
  a	
  lack	
  of	
  decent	
  
professional	
  salary	
  and	
  overcrowded	
  classrooms,	
  as	
  a	
  recent	
  Mooresville	
  Tribune	
  article	
  reported.	
  But	
  Allen	
  
also	
  told	
  us:	
  
The	
  current	
  climate	
  of	
  uncertainty	
  about	
  the	
  teaching	
  
profession	
  made	
  me	
  feel	
  unappreciated	
  and	
  taken	
  for	
  
granted.	
  .	
  .	
  and	
  I	
  needed	
  to	
  make	
  the	
  best	
  decision	
  for	
  my	
  
own	
  family	
  and	
  make	
  sure	
  I’m	
  taking	
  care	
  of	
  their	
  basic	
  
needs	
  as	
  well.	
  
He	
  believes	
  the	
  outlook	
  for	
  our	
  profession	
  in	
  North	
  Carolina	
  is	
  “not	
  
bright”—forcing	
  him	
  to	
  choose	
  to	
  leave	
  the	
  profession	
  altogether.	
  It	
  
is	
  Allen’s	
  experience,	
  as	
  well	
  as	
  our	
  own,	
  that	
  fuels	
  our	
  vision	
  for	
  the	
  
renewal	
  of	
  teaching	
  in	
  North	
  Carolina.	
  And	
  so	
  does	
  decades	
  of	
  
research.	
  	
  
Terry	
  Stoops	
  of	
  the	
  John	
  Locke	
  Foundation	
  recently	
  noted	
  that	
  “pay	
  
raises	
  should	
  be	
  closely	
  tied	
  to	
  performance	
  as	
  an	
  incentive	
  to	
  keep	
  
the	
  best	
  teachers	
  on	
  the	
  job.”1
We	
  agree.	
  But	
  we	
  have	
  discovered	
  that	
  too	
  many	
  teaching	
  policies	
  of	
  
late,	
  particularly	
  related	
  to	
  performance	
  pay,	
  are	
  disconnected	
  from	
  
the	
  evidence	
  on	
  what	
  works	
  in	
  education.	
  
We	
  teach	
  students	
  across	
  North	
  Carolina:	
  from	
  our	
  inner	
  cities,	
  our	
  
suburbs,	
  and	
  our	
  small	
  towns.	
  We	
  have	
  entered	
  teaching	
  through	
  
both	
  traditional	
  and	
  alternative	
  pathways.	
  Some	
  of	
  us	
  served	
  in	
  the	
  
military	
  or	
  worked	
  as	
  professionals	
  in	
  other	
  fields	
  before	
  choosing	
  
to	
  teach	
  in	
  our	
  state’s	
  public	
  schools.	
  We	
  teach	
  young	
  children,	
  
second	
  language	
  learners,	
  and	
  high	
  school	
  students,	
  one	
  of	
  us	
  with	
  
North	
  Carolina’s	
  Virtual	
  Public	
  Schools.	
  One	
  of	
  us	
  is	
  now	
  a	
  principal	
  
who	
  still	
  works	
  closely	
  with	
  teacher	
  leaders.	
  And	
  after	
  ten	
  years	
  in	
  
the	
  classroom,	
  another	
  of	
  us	
  recently	
  resigned	
  due	
  to	
  poor	
  working	
  
conditions	
  and	
  limited	
  opportunities	
  to	
  both	
  teach	
  and	
  lead.	
  	
  
Admittedly,	
  we	
  are	
  only	
  a	
  small	
  sample	
  of	
  the	
  95,000	
  teachers	
  across	
  
North	
  Carolina.	
  But	
  like	
  a	
  vast	
  majority	
  of	
  our	
  colleagues,	
  we	
  agree	
  
that	
  a	
  carefully	
  crafted	
  professional	
  compensation	
  system	
  has	
  huge	
  
potential	
  to	
  transform	
  the	
  teaching	
  profession	
  in	
  ways	
  that	
  can	
  help	
  
all	
  students	
  learn	
  more	
  deeply.	
  We	
  do	
  not	
  shy	
  away	
  from	
  the	
  
principle	
  that	
  teachers	
  who	
  perform	
  at	
  high	
  levels	
  deserve	
  
“I	
  remember	
  tutoring	
  in	
  some	
  
capacity	
  since	
  I	
  was	
  in	
  
elementary	
  or	
  middle	
  school.	
  
I’m	
  passionate	
  about	
  education.	
  
I	
  teach	
  to	
  make	
  a	
  positive	
  
difference	
  in	
  my	
  world.”	
  
—	
  Nicole	
  Smith	
  
Mathematics	
  teacher,	
  
Mooresville	
  Senior	
  High	
  School	
  	
  
	
  
	
  
“I	
  started	
  teaching	
  because	
  I	
  
really	
  believed	
  it	
  was	
  the	
  best	
  
way	
  to	
  impact	
  students	
  and	
  
their	
  families	
  in	
  high-­‐poverty	
  
communities.	
  I	
  knew	
  I	
  had	
  the	
  
ability	
  to	
  reach	
  kids	
  personally	
  
and	
  uniquely:	
  to	
  encourage	
  
them,	
  challenge	
  them,	
  and	
  
nurture	
  them.”	
  
—	
  Taylor	
  Milburn	
  
Former	
  teacher,	
  	
  	
  	
  
Durham	
  Public	
  Schools	
  
	
  
	
  
“I	
  did	
  not	
  intend	
  to	
  teach	
  and	
  I	
  
found	
  myself	
  in	
  a	
  middle	
  school	
  
classroom,	
  hired	
  as	
  a	
  substitute	
  
before	
  returning	
  to	
  pursue	
  my	
  
doctorate	
  for	
  another	
  
profession.	
  I	
  soon	
  knew	
  that	
  
teaching	
  was	
  my	
  destiny.	
  I	
  
loved	
  establishing	
  relationships	
  
with	
  students,	
  sharing	
  my	
  love	
  
of	
  learning,	
  and	
  helping	
  
students	
  find	
  their	
  own	
  
passions	
  and	
  future	
  goals.”	
  
—	
  Karyn	
  Dickerson	
  
AP/IB	
  Coordinator,	
  
Grimsley	
  High	
  School	
  
 
	
  
5
5
additional	
  compensation	
  for	
  their	
  performance.	
  At	
  the	
  same	
  time,	
  we	
  are	
  certain	
  that	
  many	
  of	
  the	
  pay-­‐for-­‐
performance	
  and	
  career	
  pathway	
  blueprints	
  now	
  on	
  the	
  table	
  will	
  not	
  translate	
  into	
  the	
  high-­‐achieving	
  
schools	
  imagined	
  by	
  their	
  architects.	
  Too	
  many	
  of	
  these	
  reforms	
  have	
  ignored	
  the	
  research	
  on	
  performance	
  
pay,	
  as	
  well	
  as	
  what	
  is	
  known	
  about	
  how	
  teachers	
  lead	
  and	
  support	
  one	
  another’s	
  teaching	
  practice.	
  	
  
Architects	
  of	
  prior	
  performance	
  pay	
  policies—in	
  North	
  Carolina	
  and	
  across	
  the	
  nation—have	
  not	
  heeded	
  
what	
  researchers	
  have	
  long	
  documented.	
  We	
  are	
  certain	
  that	
  a	
  vast	
  majority	
  of	
  teachers	
  want	
  to	
  be	
  paid	
  
differently—and	
  to	
  be	
  recognized	
  and	
  rewarded	
  for	
  their	
  accomplishments.	
  And	
  our	
  team	
  consistently	
  noted	
  
that	
  these	
  career	
  ladders	
  can	
  no	
  longer	
  be	
  about	
  a	
  few	
  roles	
  for	
  a	
  few	
  teachers.	
  But	
  policymakers	
  seem	
  to	
  
ignore	
  the	
  research	
  about	
  what	
  motivates	
  teachers,	
  and	
  most	
  others,	
  to	
  perform	
  in	
  their	
  jobs	
  at	
  high	
  levels.	
  As	
  
Daniel	
  Pink	
  writes	
  in	
  Drive,	
  true	
  motivation	
  is	
  about	
  autonomy,	
  mastery,	
  and	
  purpose.2	
  And	
  this	
  is	
  exactly	
  what	
  
needs	
  to	
  be	
  at	
  the	
  core	
  of	
  any	
  new	
  career	
  pathways	
  and	
  compensation	
  system	
  in	
  North	
  Carolina.	
  	
  
A new vision
We	
  have	
  a	
  vision	
  for	
  the	
  future	
  of	
  teaching	
  in	
  North	
  Carolina,	
  and	
  in	
  this	
  report	
  we	
  offer	
  specific	
  
recommendations	
  for	
  building	
  a	
  system	
  of	
  teacher	
  development	
  that	
  advances	
  student	
  learning.	
  	
  Our	
  plan	
  is	
  
founded	
  on	
  six	
  principles	
  that	
  will	
  drive	
  a	
  new	
  approach	
  to	
  career	
  pathways	
  and	
  compensation	
  for	
  teachers:	
  	
  
1. Teacher	
  compensation	
  must	
  begin	
  with	
  sound	
  base	
  pay	
  that	
  values	
  teaching	
  as	
  a	
  profession	
  and	
  
includes	
  additional	
  salary	
  and	
  bonuses	
  that	
  fuel	
  leadership,	
  innovation,	
  and	
  creativity;	
  
2. The	
  evaluation	
  process	
  for	
  identifying,	
  recognizing,	
  and	
  rewarding	
  teacher	
  leaders	
  must	
  be	
  
transparent	
  and	
  trustworthy;	
  
3. Informal	
  (as	
  well	
  as	
  formal)	
  leadership	
  roles	
  must	
  be	
  valued—and	
  incentives	
  for	
  leading	
  cannot	
  be	
  
limited	
  to	
  financial	
  ones;	
  
4. Leadership	
  opportunities	
  must	
  be	
  available	
  for	
  all	
  teachers,	
  not	
  just	
  a	
  few	
  individuals;	
  
5. Incentives	
  and	
  rewards,	
  like	
  those	
  in	
  top-­‐performing	
  nations,	
  must	
  focus	
  on	
  teachers	
  who	
  spread	
  
their	
  expertise	
  to	
  others;	
  and	
  
6. School	
  districts	
  must	
  create	
  the	
  right	
  working	
  conditions—including	
  principals	
  who	
  know	
  how	
  to	
  
cultivate	
  teacher	
  leaders—in	
  order	
  to	
  recruit	
  and	
  retain	
  classroom	
  experts	
  in	
  high-­‐need	
  schools.	
  
As	
  evidenced	
  by	
  our	
  set	
  of	
  guiding	
  principles,	
  we	
  recognize	
  the	
  need	
  for	
  a	
  more	
  nuanced	
  approach	
  to	
  career	
  
pathways	
  and	
  professional	
  compensation—one	
  that	
  acknowledges	
  how	
  teachers	
  learn	
  to	
  improve	
  and	
  what	
  
motivates	
  them	
  to	
  do	
  so.	
  This	
  approach	
  must	
  address	
  the	
  organizational	
  supports	
  that	
  teachers	
  need	
  to	
  be	
  
successful.	
  Our	
  vision	
  of	
  how	
  teachers	
  can	
  advance	
  is	
  three-­‐dimensional—looking	
  more	
  like	
  a	
  matrix	
  than	
  a	
  
traditional	
  career	
  ladder.	
  As	
  Ben	
  Owens,	
  physics	
  and	
  mathematics	
  teacher	
  at	
  Tri-­‐County	
  Early	
  College	
  High	
  
School,	
  explained:	
  
The	
  keys	
  to	
  designing	
  an	
  effective	
  teacher	
  development	
  and	
  pay	
  system	
  will	
  be	
  the	
  concepts	
  of	
  
customization,	
  flexibility,	
  and	
  a	
  myriad	
  of	
  growth	
  options—not	
  “one-­‐size-­‐fits-­‐all”	
  pathways.	
  
Ben	
  observed	
  in	
  a	
  later	
  online	
  conversation,	
  “Few	
  professions	
  these	
  days	
  typecast	
  their	
  employees	
  into	
  
narrowly	
  defined	
  roles	
  as	
  we	
  have	
  in	
  teaching.	
  Any	
  teacher,	
  regardless	
  of	
  background	
  or	
  experience,	
  can	
  be	
  a	
  
leader	
  and	
  make	
  positive	
  changes	
  outside	
  his	
  or	
  her	
  classroom.”	
  

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313823021 teacher-leadership-and-pay

  • 1.       Transforming teachers’ careers and compensation in North Carolina: A new vision from some of our state’s best teachers TeacherSolutions team d Karyn Dickerson ! Taylor Milburn ! Doyle Nicholson Dave Orphal ! Ben Owens ! Sabrina Peacock Joanna Schimizzi ! Nicole Smith August 2016  
  • 3.       2 Preface More  than  half  a  century  ago,  the  single  salary  schedule  for  teachers  was  designed  with  good  reasons  in  mind:   to  promote  gender  and  racial  pay  equity,  to  protect  teachers  from  administrators  who  might  make  capricious   employment  and  pay  decisions,  and  to  encourage  teachers  to  pursue  advanced  academic  degrees.     Like  the  dusty  blackboards  still  found  in  some  classrooms,  the  single  salary  schedule  has  served  its  purposes,   met  its  goals,  and  outlived  its  usefulness.   With  challenges  and  opportunities  before  us  that  were  unimaginable  even  ten  years  ago,  our  public  schools   need  a  far  more  nuanced  approach  to  teachers’  career  pathways  and  professional  compensation.  This  report   comes  at  time  when  a  steady  stream  of  research  evidence  has  shown  how  effective  teaching  and  powerful   student  learning  are  not  primarily  accomplishments  of  singular  teachers  but  rather  “social  endeavors  that  are   best  achieved  and  improved  through  trusting  relationships  and  teamwork,  instead  of  competition  and  a  focus   on  individual  prowess.”   As  this  report  was  being  finalized,  the  NC  General  Assembly  approved  a  budget  that  would  soon  increase  the   average  annual  teacher  salary  in  the  state  to  more  than  $50,000—a  much  needed  boost.  But  many  teachers,   especially  the  most  experienced  ones,  are  “left  out”  of  these  investments.  And  the  proposed  additional   bonuses  for  those  who  produce  higher  student  tests  mirror  eerily  the  failed  merit  pay  plans  of  the  past.     I  believe  this  report,  written  by  a  team  of  accomplished  North  Carolina  teachers,  offers  powerful  solutions  to   long-­‐standing  problems  of  how  to  pay  and  recognize  classroom  practitioners.  Their  report  can  help  bridge   the  long-­‐standing  communication  gap  between  the  makers  of  school  policy  and  the  teaching  professionals   who  put  that  policy  into  action.  This  report  makes  it  clear  that  teacher  leaders  understand  the  need  for  school   reform—including  well-­‐crafted  incentive  pay  plans.  Most  importantly,  they  know  how  to  apply  the  research   evidence  on  what  matters  most  for  student  achievement  along  with  their  much-­‐needed  insider  school  and   community  knowledge  to  help  prevent  well-­‐intentioned  reforms  from  going  awry.     These  eight  teachers  began  their  investigation  in  late  January  2016,  working  together  in  the  CTQ   Collaboratory,  their  virtual  community.  Their  deliberations  often  continued  late  into  the  evenings  after  their   intensely  busy  teaching  days.  They  examined  the  findings  of  dozens  of  studies  and  engaged  in  deep  online   conversations  as  well  as  rapid-­‐fire  Twitter  chats  with  hundreds  of  teaching  colleagues.  This  report  represents   the  first  of  a  number  of  approaches  this  CTQ  TeacherSolutions  team  seeks  to  take  to  advance  the  teaching   profession  that  their  students  deserve.  Read,  debate,  and  consider  the  wisdom  of  those  who  teach  our  state’s   children  every  day.     Barnett  Berry,  CEO  &  Partner     Center  for  Teaching  Quality   August  2016  
  • 4.       3 Executive summary The what and why of this report This  report  is  about  what  works  best  for  our  North  Carolina  students,  and  what  kind  of  teaching  profession  is   needed  to  fuel  school  improvement.  It  is  about  the  future  of  teacher  career  pathways  and  professional   compensation.  Both  the  principles  and  recommendations  have  been  assembled  by  eight  highly  accomplished   teachers  from  across  our  state  who  engaged  in  an  intensive  two-­‐month  study  of  the  research  evidence  and   analysis  of  their  own  teaching  experiences.  These  classroom  experts  worked  with  hundreds  of  their   colleagues  from  across  North  Carolina  to  reach  their  conclusions.  They  found  that  more  than  anything  else,   teachers  want  more  opportunities  to  spread  effective  teaching  practices—with  the  ultimate  goal  of  helping  all   students  learn.  And  for  them,  this  new  compensation  system  should  do  just  that.     Assertions and findings The  team’s  vision  for  the  future—represented  by  specific  solutions  they  have  designed—is  based  on  six   principles  they  identified.  The  principles  include:   1. Teacher  compensation  must  begin  with  sound  base  pay  that  values  teaching  as  a  profession  and   includes  additional  salary  and  bonuses  that  fuel  leadership,  innovation,  and  creativity;   2. The  evaluation  process  for  identifying,  recognizing,  and  rewarding  teacher  leaders  must  be   transparent  and  trustworthy;   3. Informal  (as  well  as  formal)  leadership  roles  must  be  valued—and  incentives  for  leading  cannot  be   limited  to  financial  ones;   4. Leadership  opportunities  must  be  available  for  all  teachers,  not  just  a  few  individuals;   5. Incentives  and  rewards,  like  those  in  top-­‐performing  nations,  must  focus  on  teachers  who  spread   their  expertise  to  others;  and     6. School  districts  must  create  the  right  working  conditions—including  principals  who  know  how  to   cultivate  teacher  leaders—in  order  to  recruit  and  retain  classroom  experts  in  high-­‐need  schools.     Our  proposal  for  teachers  moving  forward  in  their  careers  on  the  basis  of  the  skills  they  can  demonstrate  is   based  on  the  following  pillars:   Professional  base  pay  (and  if  teachers  do  not  deserve  a  professionally  based  minimum  salary,  they   should  not  be  teaching);   Demonstration  of  a  variety  of  expert  skills  based  on  a  well-­‐designed  and  more  comprehensive   teaching  evaluation  system;  and   Leadership  pathways  (both  formal  and  informal  roles)  for  all  teachers.   Finally,  the  report  includes  some  key  considerations  necessary  to  ensure  teachers  have  the  appropriate  tools   to  support  student  learning,  which  includes  time  to  lead  and  administrators  who  support  them  in  doing  so.        
  • 5.       4 Introduction “Loss  of  Teacher  of  Year  to  private  industry  is  heartbreaking,”  blared  a  recent  Mooresville  Tribune  headline.   After  18  years  of  “great”  teaching,  Allen  Stephens  (2015-­‐16  Teacher  of  the  Year  in  the  Mooresville  Graded   School  District)  has  left  the  classroom  to  work  in  the  private  sector.  This  trend  is  one  many  administrators   now  say  is  “snowballing”  across  North  Carolina.  Our  colleague  left  teaching  primarily  due  to  a  lack  of  decent   professional  salary  and  overcrowded  classrooms,  as  a  recent  Mooresville  Tribune  article  reported.  But  Allen   also  told  us:   The  current  climate  of  uncertainty  about  the  teaching   profession  made  me  feel  unappreciated  and  taken  for   granted.  .  .  and  I  needed  to  make  the  best  decision  for  my   own  family  and  make  sure  I’m  taking  care  of  their  basic   needs  as  well.   He  believes  the  outlook  for  our  profession  in  North  Carolina  is  “not   bright”—forcing  him  to  choose  to  leave  the  profession  altogether.  It   is  Allen’s  experience,  as  well  as  our  own,  that  fuels  our  vision  for  the   renewal  of  teaching  in  North  Carolina.  And  so  does  decades  of   research.     Terry  Stoops  of  the  John  Locke  Foundation  recently  noted  that  “pay   raises  should  be  closely  tied  to  performance  as  an  incentive  to  keep   the  best  teachers  on  the  job.”1 We  agree.  But  we  have  discovered  that  too  many  teaching  policies  of   late,  particularly  related  to  performance  pay,  are  disconnected  from   the  evidence  on  what  works  in  education.   We  teach  students  across  North  Carolina:  from  our  inner  cities,  our   suburbs,  and  our  small  towns.  We  have  entered  teaching  through   both  traditional  and  alternative  pathways.  Some  of  us  served  in  the   military  or  worked  as  professionals  in  other  fields  before  choosing   to  teach  in  our  state’s  public  schools.  We  teach  young  children,   second  language  learners,  and  high  school  students,  one  of  us  with   North  Carolina’s  Virtual  Public  Schools.  One  of  us  is  now  a  principal   who  still  works  closely  with  teacher  leaders.  And  after  ten  years  in   the  classroom,  another  of  us  recently  resigned  due  to  poor  working   conditions  and  limited  opportunities  to  both  teach  and  lead.     Admittedly,  we  are  only  a  small  sample  of  the  95,000  teachers  across   North  Carolina.  But  like  a  vast  majority  of  our  colleagues,  we  agree   that  a  carefully  crafted  professional  compensation  system  has  huge   potential  to  transform  the  teaching  profession  in  ways  that  can  help   all  students  learn  more  deeply.  We  do  not  shy  away  from  the   principle  that  teachers  who  perform  at  high  levels  deserve   “I  remember  tutoring  in  some   capacity  since  I  was  in   elementary  or  middle  school.   I’m  passionate  about  education.   I  teach  to  make  a  positive   difference  in  my  world.”   —  Nicole  Smith   Mathematics  teacher,   Mooresville  Senior  High  School         “I  started  teaching  because  I   really  believed  it  was  the  best   way  to  impact  students  and   their  families  in  high-­‐poverty   communities.  I  knew  I  had  the   ability  to  reach  kids  personally   and  uniquely:  to  encourage   them,  challenge  them,  and   nurture  them.”   —  Taylor  Milburn   Former  teacher,         Durham  Public  Schools       “I  did  not  intend  to  teach  and  I   found  myself  in  a  middle  school   classroom,  hired  as  a  substitute   before  returning  to  pursue  my   doctorate  for  another   profession.  I  soon  knew  that   teaching  was  my  destiny.  I   loved  establishing  relationships   with  students,  sharing  my  love   of  learning,  and  helping   students  find  their  own   passions  and  future  goals.”   —  Karyn  Dickerson   AP/IB  Coordinator,   Grimsley  High  School  
  • 6.     5 5 additional  compensation  for  their  performance.  At  the  same  time,  we  are  certain  that  many  of  the  pay-­‐for-­‐ performance  and  career  pathway  blueprints  now  on  the  table  will  not  translate  into  the  high-­‐achieving   schools  imagined  by  their  architects.  Too  many  of  these  reforms  have  ignored  the  research  on  performance   pay,  as  well  as  what  is  known  about  how  teachers  lead  and  support  one  another’s  teaching  practice.     Architects  of  prior  performance  pay  policies—in  North  Carolina  and  across  the  nation—have  not  heeded   what  researchers  have  long  documented.  We  are  certain  that  a  vast  majority  of  teachers  want  to  be  paid   differently—and  to  be  recognized  and  rewarded  for  their  accomplishments.  And  our  team  consistently  noted   that  these  career  ladders  can  no  longer  be  about  a  few  roles  for  a  few  teachers.  But  policymakers  seem  to   ignore  the  research  about  what  motivates  teachers,  and  most  others,  to  perform  in  their  jobs  at  high  levels.  As   Daniel  Pink  writes  in  Drive,  true  motivation  is  about  autonomy,  mastery,  and  purpose.2  And  this  is  exactly  what   needs  to  be  at  the  core  of  any  new  career  pathways  and  compensation  system  in  North  Carolina.     A new vision We  have  a  vision  for  the  future  of  teaching  in  North  Carolina,  and  in  this  report  we  offer  specific   recommendations  for  building  a  system  of  teacher  development  that  advances  student  learning.    Our  plan  is   founded  on  six  principles  that  will  drive  a  new  approach  to  career  pathways  and  compensation  for  teachers:     1. Teacher  compensation  must  begin  with  sound  base  pay  that  values  teaching  as  a  profession  and   includes  additional  salary  and  bonuses  that  fuel  leadership,  innovation,  and  creativity;   2. The  evaluation  process  for  identifying,  recognizing,  and  rewarding  teacher  leaders  must  be   transparent  and  trustworthy;   3. Informal  (as  well  as  formal)  leadership  roles  must  be  valued—and  incentives  for  leading  cannot  be   limited  to  financial  ones;   4. Leadership  opportunities  must  be  available  for  all  teachers,  not  just  a  few  individuals;   5. Incentives  and  rewards,  like  those  in  top-­‐performing  nations,  must  focus  on  teachers  who  spread   their  expertise  to  others;  and   6. School  districts  must  create  the  right  working  conditions—including  principals  who  know  how  to   cultivate  teacher  leaders—in  order  to  recruit  and  retain  classroom  experts  in  high-­‐need  schools.   As  evidenced  by  our  set  of  guiding  principles,  we  recognize  the  need  for  a  more  nuanced  approach  to  career   pathways  and  professional  compensation—one  that  acknowledges  how  teachers  learn  to  improve  and  what   motivates  them  to  do  so.  This  approach  must  address  the  organizational  supports  that  teachers  need  to  be   successful.  Our  vision  of  how  teachers  can  advance  is  three-­‐dimensional—looking  more  like  a  matrix  than  a   traditional  career  ladder.  As  Ben  Owens,  physics  and  mathematics  teacher  at  Tri-­‐County  Early  College  High   School,  explained:   The  keys  to  designing  an  effective  teacher  development  and  pay  system  will  be  the  concepts  of   customization,  flexibility,  and  a  myriad  of  growth  options—not  “one-­‐size-­‐fits-­‐all”  pathways.   Ben  observed  in  a  later  online  conversation,  “Few  professions  these  days  typecast  their  employees  into   narrowly  defined  roles  as  we  have  in  teaching.  Any  teacher,  regardless  of  background  or  experience,  can  be  a   leader  and  make  positive  changes  outside  his  or  her  classroom.”  
  • 7.       6 At  the  core  of  our  proposal  is  how  our  approach  will  drive  the  spread  of  teaching  expertise.  As  Sabrina   Peacock  pointed  out:   I  really  like  looking  at  how  teams  of  teachers  are  helping  one  another  grow.  This  will  encourage  more   collaboration  than  most  ‘merit  pay’  plans  that  suggest  teachers  focus  just  on  their  own  classrooms.   We  next  dig  into  some  lessons  learned  from  a  long  history  of  policymakers  implementing  performance  pay   and  career  ladders  for  teachers,  including  more  recent  efforts  in  Charlotte-­‐Mecklenburg  to  create  teacher   leadership  opportunities.  These  findings  will  set  the  stage  for  presenting  our  design.   Past and current efforts: Lessons learned Calls  for  improving  teaching  salaries  are  not  new.  For  more  than  70  years,  America’s  policymakers  have  tried   to  implement  different  ways  to  pay  teachers.  There  have  been  countless  programs,  like  North  Carolina’s  own   approach  in  the  late  1980s,  but  they  have  all  come  and  gone  quite  quickly—and  for  many  of  the  same  reasons.   In  2004  the  Teaching  Commission,  established  and  chaired  by  former  IBM  Chairman  Louis  V.  Gerstner,  Jr.,   called  for  our  nation  to  commit  an  additional  $30  billion  to  teacher  compensation,  to  increase  base  pay  by  10   percent  for  every  classroom  practitioner,  and  provide  30  percent  more  for  “the  top  half”  of  them  who   performed  more  effectively.  In  2012-­‐13,  however,  the  average  salary  for  public  school  teachers  in  the  United   States  was  only  $56,000  (and  $46,000  for  those  in  North  Carolina),  substantially  less  than  the  average  salaries   of  nurses  ($69,000)  and  programmers  ($83,000).  Unfortunately,  these  proposals  have  rarely  reflected  the   lessons  of  failed  efforts  from  the  past.  And  even  worse,  new  approaches  to  improve  the  teaching  profession   have  seldom  come  from  teachers—like  us.     We  believe  that  all  teachers  being  paid  on  the  single  salary  schedule  has  served  its  purposes,  met  its  goals,   and  outlived  its  usefulness.  But  it  is  not  just  about  incentive  pay.  As  Ben  described  in  one  of  our  online   conversations  via  the  CTQ  Collaboratory,  “What  matters  most  to  me  is  that  I  have  the  freedom  to  challenge   the  status  quo,  innovate,  share,  and  learn  from  my  peers  (and  students)  on  a  daily  basis.”  It  is  important  to   note,  however,  that  this  high  school  physics  teacher  in  Murphy  was  a  very  successful  engineer  for  20  years   prior  to  teaching  and  can  therefore  afford  the  modest  salary  he  earns.  Ben  noted:   I  spent  a  previous  life  in  a  career  that  gives  me  the  financial  independence  to  be  able  to  say  that.  Most   of  my  colleagues  do  not  have  the  luxury  to  take  this  approach.   Researchers  have  consistently  concluded  that  “bonus  pay”  systems  yield  no  positive  effect  on  either  student   performance  or  teachers’  attitudes  toward  their  jobs.  Recent  evaluation  reports  for  the  federally-­‐funded   Teacher  Incentive  Fund  tell  the  same  story.   North  Carolina  has  had  its  own  history  of  incentive  pay  programs  to  encourage  teachers  to  move  to  hard-­‐to-­‐ staff  schools.  And  we  quickly  discover  the  results  mirror  what  researchers  have  uncovered  elsewhere.  For   example,  in  2006,  the  North  Carolina  General  Assembly  created  a  pilot  program  to  award  salary  supplements   of  $15,000  for  up  to  ten  early-­‐career  teachers  who  agreed  to  teach  math  or  science  in  one  of  three  high-­‐need   school  districts:  Bertie,  Columbus,  and  Rockingham  counties.  The  districts  could  attract  only  a  few  teachers,   and  the  program  was  abandoned.     More  recently,  from  2010-­‐14,  fueled  by  $76  million  in  federal  Race  to  the  Top  funds,  North  Carolina  launched   performance  pay  initiatives,  and  once  again,  they  have  sputtered.  A  recent  evaluation  of  the  investments  
  • 8.     7 7 revealed  that  teachers  were  not  motivated  by  the  financial  incentives,   and  the  program  failed  to  produce  any  upticks  in  student  achievement.   Evaluators  noted  that  the  teachers  who  “reported  significant   improvements  to  either  their  own  or  their  colleagues’  practice,  often   attributed  those  changes  to  learning  coaches,  professional  development   and  training,  and  collaboration  and  teamwork—not  to  the  presence  of   the  incentive.”3  Evaluators  found  that  districts  were  more  effective  at   attracting  talent  to  high-­‐need  schools  when  they  “leveraged  their  existing   pool  of  effective  teachers”  rather  than  recruiting  them  from  elsewhere.4   We  also  had  a  chance  to  examine  some  early  evidence  from  Charlotte-­‐ Mecklenburg  Schools  (CMS),  which  has  supported  Project  LIFT,  an   important  effort  to  close  the  achievement  gap  for  students  and  provide   an  Opportunity  Culture  for  teachers.  These  are  valuable  steps  forward— recognizing  that  improving  student  learning  requires  more   comprehensive  approaches  to  reform.  In  spring  2013,  Project  LIFT  was   flooded  with  more  than  700  applications  for  approximately  two  dozen   teacher  leader  positions  in  pilot  schools,  where  bonuses  (up  to  $20,000)  could  be  earned  for  teaching  more   students  or  coaching  colleagues.  Teachers  are  hungry  to  lead,  both  here  in  North  Carolina  and  across  the   nation.     Take  Bobby  Miles  for  instance.  As  a  multi-­‐classroom  leader  (MCL),  he  continues  to  teach  while  leading  a  team   of  three  other  teachers  and  two  paraprofessionals:  co-­‐teaching,  coaching,  planning,  and  collaborating  with   them.  Bobby  is  personally  accountable  for  the  results  of  the  entire  team’s  421  eighth  grade  students,  but  he   also  receives  higher  pay.    In  just  one  year,  the  team  achieved  a  dramatic  increase  in  percentage  of  students   proficient  in  science—from  47  to  66  percent.  Bobby  described  why  he  was  interested  in  the  MCL  position  in  a   recent  blog:   Before  I  became  an  MCL  this  year,  I  was  a  professional  development  facilitator.  I  wanted  to  expand   my  reach  outside  of  the  classroom  and  prepare  myself  for  future  leadership  roles.  But  I  was  missing   the  classroom  a  lot,  yearning  for  that  daily  impact  on  [students].     Project  LIFT  certainly  recognizes  the  challenges  of  closing  the  achievement  gap  in  under-­‐served  and  fragile   neighborhoods.  Highly  effective  teachers  alone,  however,  cannot  dramatically  improve  student  achievement   without  necessary  resources  and  tools.  Project  LIFT  has  focused  on  transforming  the  culture  of  teaching  and   learning,  which  includes  community  investments  like  wraparound  services  in  these  high-­‐need  schools.  Still,   recent  surveys  of  CMS  teachers,  including  those  at  Ranson,  suggest  there  is  a  lot  more  work  to  be  done.   The  good  news  with  Project  LIFT,  however,  is  that  Ranson  teachers  are  more  likely  to  find  their  collaboration   time  “productive”  (as  67  percent  now  do)  and  to  report  that  they  can  “regularly  analyze  student  work  against   the  standards”  (79  percent)  as  well  as  receive  helpful  feedback  from  supervisors  through  observations  (73   percent).  And  the  proportion  of  teachers  responding  positively  has  seen  a  steady  uptick  over  the  last  year.     But  something  is  amiss.  Only  about  half  of  the  teachers  noted  their  administrators  seek  feedback  from  them   (56  percent)  or  have  “put  them  in  charge  of  something  important”  (49  percent).  Furthermore,  only  4  in  10   teachers  claimed  their  school  leaders  identified  opportunities  for  them  to  pursue  leadership  roles  and  only  49   One  in  four  of  our  nation’s   teachers  is  “extremely”  or  “very   interested”  in  serving  in  a  hybrid   role  where  s/he  can  both  teach   students  and  lead  reforms.     MetLife  Survey  (2013)  
  • 9.       8 percent  noted  their  administrators  “publicly  recognized”  them  for  their  accomplishments.  Less  than  half  of   the  teachers  reported  that  their  evaluation  ratings  were  accurate  (48  percent)  and  that  the  person  who   assesses  them  “knows  how  much  growth  and  progress  their  students  have  made  this  year”  (46  percent).     The  Opportunity  Culture  system  in  place  has  yet  to  address  critical  workplace  conditions  central  to  teaching   effectiveness.  The  survey  results  are  stark.     Only  21  percent  of  teachers  reported  their  workload  is  “sustainable”;   Only  28  percent  of  teachers  noted  they  can  “provide  input  on  their  work  schedules”;  and   Only  26  percent  of  teachers  claimed  they  can  “consistently  accomplish  essential  work  during  [their]   regular  planning  time.”   In  addition,  a  woefully  small  percentage  of  teachers  (5  percent)  are  satisfied  with  their  compensation—and   just  one-­‐half    of  those  responding  believe  they  will  “have  adequate,  long‐term  career  opportunities  while   working  at  CMS.*     A  recent  Charlotte  Observer  article  quoted  Denise  Watts,  Learning  Community  Superintendent  of  Project  LIFT,   who  noted  that  teaching  in  these  schools  “can  take  an  emotional  toll”  as  a  large  number  of  students  deal  with   a  host  of  issues—including  homelessness  and  neighborhood  violence—beyond  the  control  of  even  a  highly   skilled  teacher.5  As  Joanna  Schimizzi  pointed  out  in  one  of  our  team  discussions:   Many  teachers,  even  effective  ones,  are  not  prepared  for  high-­‐need  schools.  Many  of  them  do  not   believe  they  can  lead  in  these  schools  as  they  have  had  no  preparation  for  the  roles  they  may  play.     Sabrina,  a  teacher  at  a  Title  I  school  in  High  Point,  reminded  us  that  the  current  teaching  evaluation  policies,   with  a  focus  on  year-­‐to-­‐year  value-­‐added  test  score  gains,  may  undermine  efforts  to  recruit  and  retain   effective  teachers.  The  value-­‐added  statistics  are  not  as  accurate  as  policymakers  believe.     In  a  high-­‐need  school,  students  are  struggling  and  one  year  is  usually  not  enough  time  for  teachers  to   show  test  score  gains.  Most  teachers  I  know  do  not  want  to  go  to  a  high-­‐need  school  because  of  the   fear  of  losing  their  job.     After  a  ten-­‐year  teaching  career  in  challenging  communities  in  Alabama  and  North  Carolina,  Taylor  Milburn   recently  resigned  from  a  high-­‐need  school  in  Durham  because  she  did  not  have  opportunities  to  both  teach   and  lead.  She  talked  about  what  it  takes  for  teachers  to  be  successful  in  high-­‐need  schools:   When  teachers  take  on  the  challenge  of  working  in  a  high-­‐need  school,  they  need  to  know  they  are   supported  in  many  different  ways:  professionally,  personally,  financially,  and  the  list  goes  on.  If  we   want  them  to  stay,  we  have  to  find  ways  to  make  sure  these  needs  are  being  met,  in  the  same  way   they  are  working  desperately  to  meet  the  needs  of  their  students.  The  biggest  incentive,  though,  is   TIME.  We  always  needed  more  time—specifically  time  together  as  a  team,  not  just  as  individuals— time  to  plan,  time  to  collaborate,  and  time  to  reflect—in  order  to  improve.                                                                                                                     *  Administered  November  2-­‐25,  2015.    This  is  the  sixth  administration  of  TNTP  Insight  in  the  district.  At  this  school,  92%  of  teachers   responded  to  the  Insight  survey  during  this  administration,  compared  to  73%  in  the  district  as  a  whole.  Out  of  49  survey  recipients,  45   responses  were  collected  at  this  school.  
  • 10.     9 9 This  summer,  the  North  Carolina  General  Assembly  and  Gov.  Pat  McCrory  approved  a  budget  that  would   increase  teacher  and  instructional  staff  salaries  by  an  average  of  4.7  percent.  However,  this  increase  barely   makes  up  for  the  cost  of  living  increases  that  teachers  have  done  without  since  the  2008  recession.  And  many   educators  will  earn  less  than  that  average—including  some  of  the  most  experienced  teachers  in  the  state  in   districts  that  struggle  to  retain  high-­‐quality  educators.     The  budget  also  includes  a  two-­‐year  bonus  program  for  teachers  whose  students  score  well  on  standardized   tests,  which  will  likely  funnel  increases  to  teachers  in  high-­‐performing  schools  serving  advantaged  students— the  teachers  and  schools  that  least  need  incentives  and  supports  to  remain.     Similar  past  bonus  programs  in  NC  and  other  states  have  proven   ineffective  at  incentivizing  better  performance  or  teacher   retention. 6    Once  again,  the  series  of  short  term  increases  enacted   of  late  don’t  add  up  to  a  new  system  for  compensating  teachers  and   supporting  the  retention  of  our  most  accomplished  education   professionals. 7   Important takeaways All  teachers  being  paid  on  the  single  salary  schedule  has   served  its  purpose,  met  its  goals,  and  outlived  its   usefulness.   Professional  compensation  involves  more  than  incentive   pay  as  “bonus  pay”  systems  yield  few  positive  effects  on   either  students’  performance  or  teachers’  attitudes  toward   their  jobs.   Teachers  support  evaluation  frameworks  designed  to  help   them  improve  their  practice  with  colleagues  as  well  as   expand  their  opportunities  for  leadership.   Workplace  conditions  (including  time  and  administrative   support)  are  central  to  teacher  effectiveness,  particularly   in  high-­‐need  schools.   A new approach to transforming teachers’ careers and compensation We  imagine  a  comprehensive  teacher  career  and  compensation  system  that  takes  into  account  1)  the  widely   accepted  notion  that  all  teaching  salaries  need  to  be  higher,  and  2)  the  idea  that  those  who  demonstrate   superior  performance  and  lead  effectively  should  be  paid  more.  We  believe  these  two  goals  can  be   accomplished  by  creating  a  framework  that  rests  on  base  professional  pay  as  well  as  a  career  pathway  system   that  values  teachers  who  lead  in  a  variety  of  ways.  It  is  also  critical  that  the  system  reinforce  the  conditions  that   allow  teaching  expertise  to  spread.  In  other  words,  we’re  talking  about  pay,  career  pathways,  and  working   conditions  that  boost  teacher  learning  and  leadership  for  students’  benefit.     “I  do  expect  that  my  colleagues   and  I  should  be  compensated   fairly  in  terms  of  base  pay,   relative  to  what  is  acceptable  to   attract  and  maintain  high-­‐quality   teachers  that  consistently   produce  high-­‐quality  results.   And  I  expect  that  such  base   compensation  be  supplemented   if  I  am  able  to  demonstrate   excellence  in  terms  of  growing  as   a  teacher,  growing  my  colleagues   (locally  and  elsewhere),  and   consistently  producing  strong   results  in  terms  of  an  array  of   student  performance  metrics.   While  teacher  leadership  may  be   hard  to  define,  it  is  easy  to   recognize.”   —  Ben  Owens   Physics/Mathematics  teacher,   Tri-­‐County  Early  College                   High  School  
  • 11.       10 Our  model  is  more  sophisticated  than  the  overly  simplistic  merit  pay  schemes  and  career  ladders  of  past  and   present.  And  it  is  more  consistent  with  the  complexities  of  teaching  and  learning  today,  as  well  as  what  we   imagine  in  the  years  ahead.  Our  schools  and  the  career  pathways  of  teachers  need  to  look  much  differently   given  the  demand  for  students  to  meet  higher  academic  standards  to  succeed  in  our  global  economy.       Our  model  draws  on  North  Carolina’s  current  teaching  evaluation  system—although  it  includes  some  major   modifications.  We  propose  that  teachers  move  forward  in  their  careers  on  the  basis  of  the  skills  they  can   demonstrate.  Once  they  demonstrate  advanced  skills,  they  have  far  more  opportunities  to  take  on  formal  and   informal  leadership  roles  and  tasks.  We  have  a  simple  formula:  As  teachers  show  what  they  know  and  can  do,   both  time  and  additional  compensation  are  made  available  for  them  to  lead.  When  classroom  experts  are  at  the   top  of  their  leadership  game,  they  can  tap  into  a  Teacher  Innovation  Fund,  modeled  after  the  one  just   launched  in  the  Netherlands,  where  €4,000  to  €75,000  (or  $4,700  to  $85,800)  are  awarded  to  those  who   “with  their  own  discretion  shape  the  enhancement  of  their  professional  practice,  improving  education,  and   strengthening  the  profession.”  However,  our  model  includes  another  dimension  that  definitely  deserves   further  exploration:  supports  and  rewards  offered  to  school  administrators  who  cultivate  teacher  leaders.     Policy recommendations We  next  dig  into  some  of  the  specifics  and  policy  recommendations,  rooted  in  our  six  principles,  and  outlined   as  a  three-­‐part  framework:  (1)  sound  professional  base  pay,  (2)  tools  and  incentives  to  recognize  teachers  to   learn  and  improve  their  practices,  and  (3)  leadership  pathways  so  teaching  expertise  can  spread  widely.   Recommendation 1: Professional base pay   We  believe  that  teachers’  base  pay  should  recognize  that  practitioners  come  to  the  education  workplace  with   varying  levels  of  experience  and  qualifications.  And  if  teachers  do  not  deserve  a  professionally  based  minimum   salary,  they  should  not  be  teaching.   In  2006,  the  National  Center  on  Education  and  the  Economy  released  Tough  Choices  or  Tough  Times:  The   Report  of  the  New  Commission  on  the  Skills  of  the  American  Workforce.  Authored  by  a  bipartisan  group  of   business  and  policy  leaders,  the  report  called  for  teachers’  salaries  to  start  at  $45,000  for  novices,  with  a   maximum  of  $95,000  for  the  most  experienced  and  accomplished  practitioners.  This  was  ten  years  ago.   We  believe  our  base  pay  should  range  from  $40,000  to  $56,000  (with  the  latter  pegged  at  the  national   average  for  all  teachers).  We  also  believe  a  school  district  might  pay  considerably  more  for  a  new  teacher  who   has  special  expertise  and/or  has  passed  a  rigorous  performance  assessment  and  is  specifically  trained  to   work  with  students  in  high-­‐need  communities.   But  most  importantly,  every  teacher  within  a  school  system  must  have  the  opportunity  and  support  to  earn   additional  professional  compensation  and  demonstrate  that  he  or  she  deserves  the  maximum  salary,   incentives,  and  rewards.  Placing  caps  on  the  percentage  of  teachers  who  are  rewarded  for  strong   performance  and  leadership  runs  counter  to  the  idea  that  every  student  should  have  an  effective  teacher.  At   the  top  of  the  scale,  teacher  leaders  should  earn  $130,000—comparable  to  the  salaries  of  accomplished   nurses  and  engineers.  However,  we  need  a  much  more  nuanced  and  accurate  system  of  teacher  evaluation  to   identify  teaching  effectiveness  and  leadership  potential.  
  • 12.     11 11 Recommendation 2: Evaluation process to demonstrate expert skills   As  accomplished  teachers,  we  put  student  learning  ahead  of  every  other  priority  in  our  professional  lives.   Individual  teachers  should  be  held  responsible  for  moving  specific  students  forward.  Target  goals  are   important,  but  they  should  not  be  arbitrary  like  some  of  the  test  score  metrics  by  which  teachers  are  judged   today.  As  Doyle  Nicholson,  principal  at  Davie  County  High  School,  noted,  “Our  end-­‐of-­‐course  exams  have  not   been  accurate  in  determining  teacher  effectiveness,  but  I  believe  a  well-­‐designed  portfolio  can.”  Karyn   Dickerson,  National  Board  Certified  Teacher  and  the  AP/IB  Coordinator  at  Grimsley  High  School,  pointed  out,   “We  need  to  be  able  to  draw  cumulative  evidence  of  student  learning  where  our  analysis  is  used  to  measure   teaching  effectiveness.”  Ben  got  more  specific:     What  if,  instead  of  outdated  modes  of  assessment   and  then  tying  such  tests  to  teacher  evaluations,   we  adopted  a  statistically  valid  model  to   randomly  sampled  in-­‐classroom  instruction  and   use  it  as  a  basis  to  measure  teaching   effectiveness?  What  if  we  used  a  series  of   measures  that  encouraged  innovative...   [classroom]  practices  that  were  proven  to  lead  to   deeper  student  engagement,  rather  than  an   incongruent  focus  on  ‘test  prep’  that  saps  the  joy   and  wonder  out  of  student  learning  and  leaves   them  ill-­‐prepared  for  today’s  global,  knowledge-­‐ intense  economy?   He  continued:   One  idea  would  be  to  allow  teachers  to   voluntarily  opt  into  a  system  of  periodic,  random,   and  unannounced  audits  by  a  colleague  who  has   expertise  in  teaching  the  subject  matter  to   determine  peer  effectiveness.   Doyle  believes  the  current  system  requires  “too  many   boxes  to  check”  and  a  “one-­‐size-­‐fits-­‐all  standardized  test”   is  not  enough  to  focus  on  “what  is  really  going  on  in  the   classroom.”  The  current  approach  stands  in  stark  contrast   to  that  of  top-­‐performing  nations  like  Singapore  (see   sidebar  at  right).8     Researchers  have  shown  how  high-­‐quality  collaboration   among  teachers  improves  student  achievement.9  And  in   top-­‐performing  nations,  teachers  work  together  in  very   structured  ways  to  assess  student  learning,  determine  their  own  professional  development,  and  collectively   evaluate  impact.10  We  can  do  the  same  in  North  Carolina.  And  we  can  imagine  teachers  earning  anywhere   from  5  to  15  percent  bonuses  upon  demonstrating  what  they  have  learned  as  well  as  the  impact  their  learning   In  Singapore,  the  teaching  evaluation  system   focuses  on  teachers’  contributions  to  the   holistic  development  of  students  and  how  well   they  spread  their  expertise  to  colleagues.  Key   dimensions  include  a  focus  on  the  quality  of   student  learning,  pastoral  care  and  well-­‐being   of  students,  co-­‐curricular  activities,  and   collaboration  with  parents—not  on   standardized  test  scores.  The  evaluation  begins   with  a  self-­‐assessment  where  assessors,   typically  senior  teachers,  use  a  narrative  as   opposed  to  a  checklist.  The  evaluation  process   “encourages  teachers  to  self-­‐reflect  on  their   capabilities  and  achievements  and  chart  their   own  professional  development”  as  well  as   “reinforce[s]  behaviors  and  outcomes  the   Ministry  of  Education  values.”  The  evaluations   also  include  a  future  orientation—with   teachers  assessed  on  their  "current  estimated   potential.”  Decisions  are  made  on  evidence   from  a  portfolio,  and  principals  always  consult   with  senior  teachers  who  are  experts  in  the   field  of  the  teacher  being  evaluated.       Evaluation system in a top-performing nation
  • 13.       12 has  had  on  their  teaching  practice.  In  addition,  these  types  of  evaluations  will  show  which  teachers  are  most   apt  to  lead  in  specific  ways.   Recommendation 3: Leadership pathways We  live  in  a  time  when  enterprise  and  innovation  are  greatly  valued—when  American  entrepreneurship  is   seen  as  one  of  our  culture’s  greatest  assets.  Imagination  and  creative  collaboration  rank  high  on  the  checklists   of  important  21st-­‐century  skills,  and  successful  companies  are  encouraging  their  professional  workers  to   think  outside  of  the  box  as  they  search  for  fresh  solutions  to  persistent  problems.  If  policymakers  and  school   reform  advocates  are  truly  committed  to  the  creation  of  high-­‐performing  schools,  they  will  encourage   teachers  to  become  innovators  and  entrepreneurs  by  ensuring  teacher  compensation  systems  that  stimulate   such  activity.   We  imagine  a  wide  variety  of  formal  and  informal  leadership  roles  that  teachers  can  play,  with  special   funding  streams  from  the  state  to  assist  districts  in  paying  for  them.  We  imagine  at  least  five  state-­‐supported   teacher  leader  roles,  plus  an  innovation  fund  so  classroom  experts  can  incubate  their  own  ideas.     First,  many  of  us  (and  many  of  our  colleagues)  would  serve  as  mentors  if  we  had  the  time  and  support  to  do   so.  North  Carolina  continues  to  be  plagued  by  high  teacher  turnover,  which  is  currently  15  percent  a  year.11  In   Northampton,  more  than  33  percent  of  the  district’s  155  teachers  left  last  year.  There  is  an  obvious  need  for   our  best  teachers  to  support  new  recruits  to  the  classroom.  Our  state’s  accomplished  teachers  have  deep   experience  at  this  work  and  want  to  do  more.  Joanna  offered  a  very  important  observation:   Being  an  effective  mentor  to  an  adult  requires  a  different  skill  set  compared  to  teaching  students.   Many  mentor  programs  are  online  click-­‐through  trainings  that  leave  mentors  untrained  and  the   mentee  often  suffers.  In  addition,  mentoring  a  new  teacher  takes  a  significant  amount  of  time  and   energy,  sometimes  feeling  like  a  second  job.  Currently,  there  is  very  little  compensation  and  thus   many  experienced  educators  choose  to  work  a  second  job  that  pays  rather  than  a  second  job  that   doesn't  pay.     Second,  if  more  teachers  are  going  to  receive  more  high-­‐quality  feedback  on  their  teaching,  then  more  of  us   need  to  be  prepared  and  utilized  as  peer  reviewers.  Studies  of  peer  review  programs  show  they  “can  improve   erratic  and  ineffective  teacher  evaluation  and  solve  the  problem  of  stalled  dismissals.”12  But  most   importantly,  researchers  have  shown  how  peer  review  also  improves  teaching  effectiveness,  and  the  key  to   creating  an  authentic  and  transparent  evaluation  system  is  to  have  teachers  play  a  major  role  in  it.    Ben  and   his  colleagues  with  the  North  Carolina  Center  for  the  Advancement  of  Teaching  have  designed  a  cross-­‐district   collaborative  called  “Scaling  the  Pockets  of  Teaching  Excellence  in  Western  North  Carolina  Project”  to   enhance  peer-­‐to-­‐peer  observations  (like  lesson  study)  across  several  school  systems.  This  approach  is  in  its   second  year  and  has  been  proven  to  be  a  highly  effective  but  low-­‐cost  method  to  provide  teacher-­‐to-­‐teacher   professional  learning  that  can  be  scaled  to  other  schools  and  districts  through  existing  professional  learning   networks.  It  draws  on  current  professional  development  dollars  and  can  serve  as  a  model  for  how  teachers,   with  time  and  support,  can  drive  their  own  learning.  We  need  more  teachers  to  serve  as  peer  reviewers  as  well   as  professional  learning  designers  who  can  spread  their  teaching  expertise.   Third,  accomplished  teachers  could  play  an  important  role  in  curating  resources  in  helping  our  colleagues   teach  the  new  essential  student  standards.  Teachers  do  not  lack  materials  and  tools—but  many  do  struggle  to  
  • 14.     13 13 identify  which  are  the  most  helpful.  Many  districts  have  content  specialists,  but  as  Joanna  noted,  “The  shame   is  that  these  roles  usually  pull  some  of  the  best  educators  out  of  the  classroom  entirely.”  And  often,  as  Karyn   claimed,  content  specialists  are  not  utilized  to  “vet  resources”  for  busy  teaching  colleagues.  Teachers  need   less  supervision  and  more  support  in  shifting  from  teaching  topics  to  concepts,  and  as  a  result,  we  need  more   classroom  experts  who  can  serve  as  content  curators,  drawing  on  their  day-­‐to-­‐day  teaching  experience  with   students.     Fourth,  the  essential  standards  require  more  sophisticated  ways  to  assess  deeper  learning  outcomes.  That  is,   teachers  need  to  be  able  to  measure  students’  capacity  to  gather  and  evaluate  information  and  ideas  as  well   as  conduct  original  research  in  answering  questions.  The  knowledge  base  on  how  to  develop  performance   tasks  that  measure  students'  deeper  mastery  of  content  and  skills  is  emerging  (see  the  Center  for   Collaborative  Education’s  Quality  Performance  Assessment  (QPA)  framework).  But  we  need  more  teacher   leaders  who  have  skills  as  assessment  experts  to  assist  their  colleagues  in  learning  how  to  measure  student   mastery  of  deeper  learning  outcomes.  As  Karyn  reminded  us,  “Assessment  experts  would  also  need  to  be   strong  professional  development  leaders  who  know  how  adults  learn  best  in  order  to  share  the  assessment   shifts  with  other  educators.”   Fifth,  the  complexities  of  serving  students,  particularly  in  high-­‐need  schools,  means  we  need  more  and  better   school-­‐community  partnerships  in  order  to  build  bridges  between  teaching  the  core  curriculum  and  after-­‐ school  and  summer  programs,  as  well  as  to  create  a  more  integrated  approach  to  teaching  students  and   working  with  parents.  When  asked  about  what  new  leadership  role  she  would  play  if  she  had  the  time  and   space  available,  Sabrina  said:     I  would  really  like  to  work  with  parents  and  members  of   the  community  so  we  could  share  resources,  ideas,  and   enrichment  activities  that  would  make  the  classroom   experience  even  better  for  our  students.     Karyn  noted  that  each  school  ought  to  have  several  hybrid   teaching  roles  so  more  teachers  can  “work  as  school-­‐community   liaisons  to  organize  people  and  resources  to  get  the  community   into  the  school  and  the  school  into  the  community.”   We  believe  the  state  should  set  aside  another  pool  of  funds,  much   like  the  Iowa  state  legislature  has  done,  to  fuel  a  teacher   leadership  and  compensation  system.  The  legislature  allocated   $150  million  for  a  three-­‐year  pilot,  with  $309  per  student,  so   districts  can  set  a  vision  and  goals  for  what  they  plan  to   accomplish,  which  includes  some  of  the  roles  we  have  described   herein.  (See  legislation  here.)   In  the  past,  North  Carolina  funded  mentors  at  $1,100  per  teacher,   an  extremely  modest  investment.  With  limited  funds,  districts   like  Durham  Public  Schools  only  had  the  dollars  to  pay  for  one   full-­‐time  mentor  for  100  beginners.13  We  believe  the  state  should  create  a  formula  that—much  like  Iowa’s—is   based  on  local  needs.  The  formula  could  support  districts  to  sufficiently  compensate  and/or  offer  reduced   teaching  loads  to  work  with  administrators  in  both  coaching  and  assessing  their  colleagues,  as  well  as   “Organizing  teacher  leadership  takes   time  and  resources.  When  I  wanted  to   spur  a  new  idea  for  my  school,  an   outside  organization  funded  buying   the  books  (and  other  resources   needed)  for  all  the  teachers  involved.   It  was  a  small  investment,  but  it   spoke  volumes  to  the  teachers   involved  and  made  the  work  more   possible.  But  teachers  shouldn’t  have   to  look  outside  their  workplace  for   funds  to  support  meaningful   professional  learning.  Innovation   funds  would  both  encourage  and   reward  continued  learning  and   collaboration  between  teachers.”     —  Joanna  Schimizzi   Biology  teacher,           North  Carolina  Virtual   Public  Schools  
  • 15.       14 sustaining  much  needed  school-­‐community  partnerships  (like  Project  LIFT).  We  also  suggest  that  districts   work  together  (like  the  Pockets  of  Excellence  project),  using  online  communities,  so  they  can  share  teacher   leaders  in  their  roles  as  content  curators  and  assessment  experts,  creating  cost-­‐efficiencies  as  they  spread   teaching  expertise.   Finally,  we  believe  so  many  more  teachers  could  create  new  policies  and  practices  if  they  had  an  innovation   fund  to  fuel  their  creativity.  We  believe  the  state  legislature  should  begin  by  offering  $5  million  annually  for  up   to  500  teachers  to  apply  (for  up  to  $35,000)  to  incubate  their  own  leadership  ideas.  (This  idea  is  not  so  far-­‐ fetched.  Not  only  do  we  see  this  in  the  Netherlands  today,  but  closer  to  home  in  the  late  1990s,  the  Ohio   legislature  provided  funds  to  teacher  teams  for  $25,000  per  year  to  support  efforts  to  redesign  their  schools   to  improve  student  learning.)   Our  team  represents  a  tiny  fraction  of  the  North  Carolina  teachers  who  could  contribute  valuable  insights  on   this  front.  As  22-­‐year  veteran  history  teacher  Dave  Orphal  asserted,  “Why  can’t  classroom  teachers  help   advise  local  school  boards  and  state  lawmakers  about  educational  policy,  systematically  adding  a  perspective   and  new  programs  so  that  the  ‘rubber’  of  proposals  might  meet  the  ‘road’  of  learning  and  teaching?”     We  want  to  see  more  hybrid  roles  in  which  teachers  can  both  teach  and  lead.  Instead  of  only  deploying  full-­‐ time  coaches  or  supervisors  who  do  not  teach,  districts  can  create  more  hybrid  roles  in  order  to  enable   classroom  experts  to  lead.  Offering  year-­‐round  hybrid  positions  with  comparable  pay  would  help  retain   strong  teachers  who  want  to  remain  in  the  classroom  but  are  also  eager  for  new  professional  challenges.   Year-­‐long  contracts  could  be  built  with  innovation  in  mind.  For  example,  there  might  be  options  for  teachers   to  collaboratively  organize  their  own  work;  to  design  and  pilot  small  educational  initiatives  under  state  or   district  sponsorship;  or  to  build,  align,  and  implement  curriculum  in  ways  that  make  sense  for  diverse   students  they  teach.  This  is  what  Dave  had  in  mind  when  he  called  for  the  state  to  set  up  an  innovation  fund   for  teacherpreneurs  to  incubate  and  execute  their  own  ideas:   I  think  teachers  should  be  able  to  apply  to  their  district  with  an  idea  for  innovation.  A  team  of   respected  master  teachers  and  administrators  would  form  the  committee  that  would  decide  which   ideas  were  funded.  Funding  would  allow  teachers  to  have  release  time  to  lead  and  resources  to   incubate  their  idea.   As  Nicole  Smith,  math  teacher  at  Mooresville  Senior  High  School,  noted,  “Our  vision  is  for  the  state  to  create   and  update  funding  streams  to  assist  districts  in  paying  for  teachers  filling  various  formal  and  informal   leadership  roles.”  But  these  funding  streams  need  to  be  more  than  just  salary  supplements.  Teachers  need   time  to  lead,  but  they  also  require  genuine  administrative  support.  We  cover  these  matters  next  in  a   supplement  to  our  model  recommendations.   Key considerations: Ensuring time and administrative support Rethinking  teacher  pay  and  career  pathways  are  important  steps,  but  they  must  be  accompanied  by  careful   attention  to  the  working  conditions  that  allow  teaching  expertise  to  spread.  We  make  this  case  not  just  based   on  our  collective  years  of  experience  teaching,  but  also  from  substantial  research  evidence  assembled  over   the  last  several  decades.    And  a  new  study  offers  us  even  more  insight:  Improving  school  climate  lowers   teacher  attrition  and  raises  student  achievement.  The  researchers  pointed  to  the  importance  of  both  “the  
  • 16.     15 15 quality  of  school  leadership”  as  well  as  the  “extent  to  which  teachers  feel  supported  by  their  colleagues,  work   together  to  improve  their  instructional  practice,  and  trust  and  respect  one  another.”14   However,  most  teachers  in  the  United  States  do  not  work  in  schools  that  are  organized  so  that  they  can  work   collaboratively  and  lead  in  ways  we  have  described,  a  fact  well-­‐documented  by  many  other  researchers.15  For   example,  a  recent  survey  of  100,000  teachers  from  34  nations  found  that  U.S.  teachers  are  far  less  likely  to  see   one  another  teach,  and  far  more  likely  to  have  an  administrator,  rather  than  a  peer,  offer  feedback  on  their   teaching.16  In  the  U.S.,  50  percent  of  teachers  have  never  observed  a  colleague  and  offered  feedback.  In  Japan,   a  mere  6  percent  can  say  the  same.  More  than  25  years  ago,  researcher  Mark  Smylie  and  colleagues  concluded   that  “little  attention  has  been  paid  to  preparing  the  school  as  a  setting  for  new  forms  of  leadership”— including  the  design  and  enactment  of  new  roles  for  teachers.17    Leadership  in  any  field,  but  particularly   among  teachers,  rarely  occurs  as  “a  chance  organizational  event.”18   The  National  Center  on  Time  and  Learning  offers  useful  resources  for  system  leaders  to  rethink  time,  roles,   and  school  design  to  advance  professional  learning  and  teacher  leadership.  One  of  the  models  they  highlight   is  the  Generation  Schools  Network,  which  draws  on  a  more  focused  curriculum  and  reallocated  personnel   dollars  so  teachers  can  learn  and  lead.  Students  get  more  and  better  learning  time,  and  teachers  have  two   hours  a  day  to  collaborate  with  one  another,  as  well  as  20  days  of  additional  professional  development  per   year.   Modest  adjustments  in  current  teaching  schedules  can  create  more  time  for  teachers.  A  CTQ  TeacherSolutions   team  from  Kentucky  developed  15  recommendations  as  a  primer  for  beginning  to  free  up  teachers  for   innovative  thinking  and  action.  These  include  reducing  unnecessary  bus  and  hall  duty  as  well  as  ensuring   uninterrupted  planning  time.  Nicole  suggested  another  option:  “dedicated  substitute  teachers  who  can  teach   classes  once  a  week  or  every  other  week  to  allow  teachers  time  for  reflection,  collaboration  and  true   professional  development.”     Our  schools  need  more  principals  like  Doyle  who  have  deep  teaching  expertise  and  embrace  teacher   leadership.  We  need  to  cultivate  more  principals  like  him.  Lori  Nazareno,  who  taught  for  more  than  25  years   in  two  high-­‐need  school  systems,  told  us:   We  need  principals  who  are  responsible  for  identifying  and  leveraging  the  strengths  of  teacher   leaders  and  then  providing  the  autonomy  and  resources  for  those  strengths  to  be  activated  to  serve   the  school  community.  Think  conductor  here.  Conductors  are  responsible  for  ensuring  that  the  entire   orchestra  is  working  together  and  that  each  musician  gets  better.  They  are  NOT  responsible  for   actually  playing  any  instrument  and,  in  fact,  they  readily  accept  that  the  musicians  are  the  masters  of   their  craft.  That  said,  I  would  venture  a  guess  that  conductors  also  HAVE  played  an  instrument  or   two.  They  should  know  what  it  takes  to  do  that  well.   Greater  power  for  teachers  need  not  mean  less  influence  for  principals:  as  teachers  gain  authority  and   responsibility,  their  principals’  efforts  will  benefit  from  a  growth  of  capacity  and  visibility.    As  Doyle  noted:     I  try  to  be  a  principal  who  is  facilitator  of  true  collaborative  decision-­‐making  with  the  teachers.  But   the  state  needs  to  look  for  ways  to  incorporate  these  possibilities  into  teacher  leader  schedules.   But  Doyle  and  many  other  principals  like  him  are  limited  in  what  they  can  do  to  advance  teacher  leadership   because  they  too,  as  Karyn  noted,  have  been  “overburdened  with  unnecessary  paperwork  and  limited  time  to   get  to  know  the  strengths  of  the  teachers  in  their  building.”  She  continued:  
  • 17.       16 In  my  one-­‐year  foray  into  the  central  office  administration,  I  saw  first-­‐hand  the  impact  that  good   principals  had  on  their  schools.  I  witnessed  principals  who  could  unite  teachers  and  articulate  a   shared  vision.  But  I  did  see  principals  who  didn't  know  how  to  delegate  responsibility  or  didn't  have   any  additional  support  in  an  administrative  team—and  they  were  the  ones  who  struggled  the  most.   And  the  ones  who  also  struggled  were  those  who  had  little  knowledge  of  curriculum  and  instruction,   and  the  work  of  the  teachers  they  were  supposed  to  be  leading.   We  know  for  sure  that  any  system  to  transform  teachers’  careers—and  their  compensation—must   incorporate  new  ways  to  leverage  more  time  for  classroom  experts  to  lead,  and  boost  the  capacity  of   principals  to  do  so.     Conclusion First  things  first:  North  Carolina  needs  to  establish  base  pay  that  accounts  for  a  practitioner’s  education  and   experience  and  that  is  substantial  enough  to  recognize  the  professional  commitment  and  excellence  we   expect  from  every  teacher  in  this  state.     We  cannot  stop  there.  Strong  base  pay  is  the  starting  line—not  the  finish.  We  must  ensure  that  every  teacher   has  the  opportunity  and  support  to  earn  additional  professional  compensation  and  demonstrate  that  he  or   she  deserves  the  maximum  salary,  incentives,  and  rewards  available.     Of  course,  paying  teachers  for  performance  is  not  a  new  idea.  Scholars  have  documented  the  failed  efforts   from  years  past.  These  initiatives  floundered,  in  large  part,  due  to  unresolved  technical  and  political  issues,  as   well  as  the  unwillingness  of  policymakers  to  invest  more  fully  in  teaching.  But  paying  teachers  for   performance—and  their  leadership—is  an  idea  for  which  the  time  has  come—if  it  is  done  correctly.   We  have  presented  a  framework  that  captures  our  teaching  knowledge  and  many  years  of  experience   working  with  students  and  their  families—gathering  insights  from  schools  across  North  Carolina  as  well  as   many  colleagues  across  the  country  via  the  CTQ  Collaboratory.  It  is  built  upon  four  simple  words:  valued,   trusted,  acknowledged,  and  accountable.     We  are  certain  our  recommendations  will  attract  more  talent  into  teaching,  ensure  our  best  teachers  can   spread  their  expertise,  and  retain  our  most  accomplished  practitioners.  Most  importantly,  our  framework  has   been  built  from  what  we  know  will  advance  the  teaching  profession  in  the  best  interest  of  our  state’s   students.     In  closing,  we  call  for  a  range  of  stakeholders  to  take  action:   Policymakers  can  study  the  lessons  of  failed  performance  pay  plans  of  the  past  and  invest  in  a  pilot  of   our  ideas  in  six  to  ten  school  districts;     Administrators  can  advocate  for  measures  that  prepare  and  support  them  in  how  to  redesign  schools   so  teachers  can  spread  their  expertise  and  lead;   Business  leaders  can  partner  with  schools  and  look  for  ways  to  support  and  invest  in  teacher  leader   development;    
  • 18.     17 17 Teachers  associations  can  work  with  state  legislators  to  develop  a  teacher  compensation  plan  that   encourages  practitioners  to  spread  their  expertise  through  leadership  roles  as  well  as  advocate  for   fair  pay,  smaller  class  sizes,  and  protected  collaboration  times;  and   Teachers  can  proactively  participate  in  advancing  a  school  culture  that  encourages  peer  observation   and  leadership.   We  are  ready  to  work  with  those,  like  us,  who  want  to  attract  and  retain  the  best  and  brightest  in  our   profession,  and  help  them  both  teach  and  lead  without  leaving  the  classroom.  Everyone,  from  policymakers  to   teachers,  has  to  think  and  act  differently  about  the  teaching  profession—one  that  would  not  lose  a   professional  like  Allen  Stevens.  His  words  must  be  heard  and  understood:   We  shouldn't  have  to  choose.  We  should  be  able  to  spend  our  energy  during  the  day  nurturing  our  kids   and  making  sure  they're  learning,  but  also  be  able  to  go  home  at  night  and  have  enough  energy  left  for   our  own  kids.     As  Ben  concludes,  “We  stand  ready  to  support  the  ideas  offered  in  this  report  as  a  way  to  redefine  what  it   means  to  be  a  teaching  professional  in  North  Carolina—where  teachers  have  the  time  to  teach  and  to  lead.   Our  students  and  our  state  deserve  nothing  less.”  
  • 19.       18 NC teacher team biographies   Transforming teachers’ careers and compensation in North Carolina Karyn Dickerson Karyn  Dickerson  is  a  National  Board  Certified  Teacher  and  the  AP/IB  Coordinator  at  Grimsley  High  School  in   Greensboro,  NC.  She  is  also  an  instructor  for  a  teaching  methods  course  for  Guilford  College.  An  educator  for   10  years,  she  has  taught  all  levels  of  high  school  English,  spent  a  year  as  an  academic  coach  for  Guilford   County  Schools,  and  now  teaches  IB  Theory  of  Knowledge.  She  was  the  2013-­‐2014  North  Carolina  Teacher  of   the  Year,  a  2016  NEA  Foundation  North  Carolina  Teaching  Excellence  Award  winner,  and  an  Education  Policy   Fellow  graduate.  As  a  proponent  of  global  education,  she  visited  Germany  with  the  Center  for  International   Understanding  Global  Educators  Team  and  will  travel  to  Peru  this  summer  as  an  NEA  Foundation  Global   Fellow.   Taylor Milburn Taylor  Milburn,  a  National  Board  Certified  Teacher,  spent  10  years  in  Alabama  and  North  Carolina   classrooms.  She  was  committed  to  teaching  in  Title  I  schools  where  she  taught  first  grade,  fourth  grade,  and   exceptional  education.  She  served  on  the  Alabama  State  Department  Teacher  Evaluation  Design  Committee   and  the  Alabama  Governor’s  Commission  on  Quality  Teaching,  worked  on  a  national  CTQ  TeacherSolutions   project  around  teacher  working  conditions,  and  was  a  lead  mentor  and  National  Board  candidate  support   provider.  Taylor  was  the  2014-­‐2015  Jefferson  County  Schools  (AL)  Teacher  of  the  Year.  She  is  now  a  proud   member  of  the  staff  at  CTQ,  where  she  continues  her  work  advocating  for  the  teaching  profession.   Doyle Nicholson Doyle  Nicholson,  a  24-­‐year  education  veteran,  is  currently  principal  at  Davie  County  High  School  in   Mocksville,  NC.  A  National  Board  Certified  Teacher,  Doyle  taught  high  school  mathematics  for  20  years  before   becoming  an  administrator.  His  local  leadership  in  mentoring  novice  teachers  and  National  Board  candidates   earned  him  2006  Teacher  of  the  Year  honors  in  Yadkin  County  (NC)  Schools.  He  works  with  CTQ  to  provide   training  for  teacher  leaders  interested  in  becoming  virtual  community  organizers.   Dave Orphal David  Orphal  is  a  22-­‐year  veteran  of  the  classroom,  having  taught  history  and  education  theory  from  the   middle  school  to  the  university  level.  His  career  has  taken  him  from  rural  California  to  inner-­‐city  Oakland  and   now  to  North  Carolina,  where  he  currently  teaches  American  History  in  Pittsboro.  He  has  been  publishing   about  teacher  evaluation  and  high-­‐stakes  testing  since  2001.  Dave  is  honored  to  have  been  awarded  the   Quality  Teaching  Award  from  Oakland  Unified  School  District  (CA)  and  recognized  as  a  Leader  in  Human   Rights  by  the  California  Teachers'  Association.  He  has  served  on  teacher-­‐led  educational  think  tanks  with   CTQ,  the  California  Teachers  Association,  and  Great  Oakland  Public  Schools.  You  can  see  his  TEDx  talk  on   teacher  leadership  on  YouTube.  
  • 20.     19 19 Ben Owens Ben  Owens  spent  20  years  working  as  an  engineer  for  a  multinational  corporation  before  beginning  a  second   career  as  a  physics  and  mathematics  teacher  at  Tri-­‐County  Early  College  High  School  in  the  rural  Appalachian   mountains  of  North  Carolina.  He  is  a  2016  TeachStrong  Ambassador;  a  2014  Hope  Street  Group  National   Teacher  Fellow;  a  CTQ  Virtual  Community  Organizer;  and  a  recipient  of  the  North  Carolina  Science,   Mathematics,  and  Technology  Center’s  2016  Outstanding  9-­‐16  Educator  Award  in  Science,  Mathematics,  and   Technology.   Sabrina Peacock Sabrina  Peacock  is  a  National  Board  Certified  Teacher  at  Oak  Hill  Elementary  in  High  Point,  NC.  She  teaches   third  grade  and  has  been  teaching  for  23  years.  She  is  a  very  active  member  of  NCAE,  GCAE,  the  Common  Core   Work  Group  for  the  Mid-­‐Atlantic  Region,  and  the  NC  College  and  Career  Ready  Leadership  Team.  Sabrina  is   devoted  to  developing  instructional  teacher  leaders  and  mentoring  new  teachers.   Joanna Schimizzi Joanna  Schimizzi  is  a  National  Board  Certified  Teacher  who  lives  in  Charlotte,  NC.  She  has  taught  biology  for  9   years  and  currently  works  for  North  Carolina  Virtual  Public  Schools  to  support  students  with  disabilities.   Joanna  is  an  America  Achieves  Lead  Fellow  and  a  MeckEd  Teacher  of  Excellence.  She  believes  teacher   collaboration  is  one  of  the  most  powerful  tools  for  moving  students  forward,  and  so  she  works  closely  with   Student  Achievement  Partners  and  CTQ.     Nicole Smith Nicole  Smith  is  a  high  school  math  teacher  in  Mooresville,  NC,  and  a  Marine  Corps  veteran.  She  has  been   teaching  for  two  years.    Nicole  is  an  active  member  of  CTQ,  as  well  as  the  team  facilitator  for  Math  II  at  her   school.  She  has  been  recognized  by  the  Bill  &  Melinda  Gates  Foundation  for  teaching  excellence.  Nicole   believes  multiple  perspectives  provide  a  clear  picture  of  the  educational  landscape,  so  she  has  written  articles   for  Education  Week  Teacher  and  Phi  Delta  Kappan.  
  • 21.       20 ENDNOTES                                                                                                                     1  Barrett,  M.  (2016,  February  1).  NC  legislature  looking  at  teacher  pay.  Citizen-­‐Times.  Retrieved  from  http://www.citizen-­‐   2  Pink,  D.H.  (2009).  Drive:  the  surprising  truth  about  what  motivates  us.  New  York  City:  Riverhead  Press.     3    Stallings,  T.,  Parker,B.,  Argueta,R.,  Maser,R.,  Lauren,D.,  Kosolowski,K.,  &  Davis,  C.  (2016).  State  and  local  differentiated  educator   compensation  plans  across  North  Carolina:  An  updated  summary  of  Race  to  the  Top-­‐funded  incentives  and  other  strategic  staffing  plans.   Consortium  for  Educational  Research  and  Evaluation—North  Carolina.  Retrieved  from   http://www.ncleg.net/documentsites/committees/house2015-­‐175/January%2027-­‐ 28,%202016/Trip%20Stallings%20Handout_Strategic%20staffing%20and%20P4P%20in%20NC%20during%20RttT%20-­‐%20v5%20-­‐ %201%2027%2016.pdf     4  Ibid.       5  Dunn,  A.  (2014,  December  6).  Report  gives  mixed  reviews  for  Project  LIFT’s  effectiveness.  The  Charlotte  Observer.  Retrieved  from   http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/local/education/article9242096.html     6  Associated  Press.  (2016,  July  9).  N  Carolina  teachers  see  broad  raises,  more  bonus  chances.  Greensboro  News  &  Record.  Retrieved  from   http://www.greensboro.com/news/north_carolina_ap/n-­‐carolina-­‐teachers-­‐see-­‐broad-­‐raises-­‐more-­‐bonus-­‐chances/article_dabc41b7-­‐ 3206-­‐5cf0-­‐a757-­‐d214dc41beaf.html     7  Ball,  J.  (2016,  July  11).  Some  teachers  left  out  of  state  pay  raises.  Citizen-­‐Times.  Retrieved  from  http://www.citizen-­‐ times.com/story/news/local/2016/07/10/some-­‐teachers-­‐left-­‐out-­‐state-­‐pay-­‐raises/86747796/   8  Jensen,  B.,  Sonneman,  J.,  Roberts-­‐Hull,  R.,  &  Hunter,  A.  (2016).  Beyond  PD:  Teacher  professional  learning  in  high-­‐performing  systems.   Learning  First.  Retrieved  from  http://www.ncee.org/wp-­‐content/uploads/2015/08/BeyondPDWeb.pdf       9  Ronfeldt,  M.,  Farmer,  S.  O.,  McQueen,  K.,  &  Grissom,  J.  (2015).  Teacher  collaboration  in  instructional  teams  and  student  achievement.   American  Educational  Research  Journal,  52(3),  475-­‐514.     10  Jensen,  B.,  Sonneman,  J.,  Roberts-­‐Hull,  R.,  &  Hunter,  A.  (2016).  Beyond  PD:  Teacher  professional  learning  in  high-­‐performing  systems.   Learning  First.  Retrieved  from  http://www.ncee.org/wp-­‐content/uploads/2015/08/BeyondPDWeb.pdf       11    Brenneman,  R.  (2015,  October  15).    Teacher  attrition  continues  to  plague  North  Carolina.  Education  Week.    Retrieved  from   http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2015/10/14/teacher-­‐attrition-­‐continues-­‐to-­‐plague-­‐north-­‐carolina.html     12  Johnson,  S.,  Papay,  J.,  Fiarman,  S.,  Munger,  M.,  &  Qazilbash,  E.  (2010).  Realizing  the  potential  of  peer  assistance  and  review.  Center  for   American  Progress.    Retreived  from  https://www.americanprogress.org/wp-­‐content/uploads/issues/2010/05/pdf/par.pdf       13  Alexander,  J.  (2014,  September  27).  DPS  to  expand  teacher  mentoring  program.  The  News  &  Observer.  Retrieved  from   http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/education/article10071422.html     14  Kraft,  M.A,  Marinell,  W.H.,  and  Yee,  D.  (2016).  School  organizational  contexts,  teacher  turnover,  and  student  achievement:  Evidence   from  panel  data.  Retrieved  from   http://steinhardt.nyu.edu/scmsAdmin/media/users/sg158/PDFs/schools_as_organizations/SchoolOrganizationalContexts_WorkingPap er.pdf     15  Lewis,  C.  (2015).  What  is  improvement  science?  Do  we  need  it  in  education?  Educational  Researcher,  44(1),  54-­‐61.     16  Organisation  for  Economic  Co-­‐operation  and  Development.  (2014).  Results  from  TALIS  2013:  County  note,  United  States  of  America.   Retrieved  from  http://www.oecd.org/unitedstates/TALIS-­‐2013-­‐country-­‐note-­‐US.pdf       17  Smylie,  M.  A.,  &  Denny,  J.  W.  (1990).  Teacher  leadership:  Tensions  and  ambiguities  in  organizational  perspectives.  Education   Administration  Quarterly,  26(3),  235-­‐259.     18  Murphy,  J.  (2005).  Connecting  teacher  leadership  and  school  improvement.  Thousand  Oaks,  CA:  Corwin.