Monday, February 11, 2008

Christine Quinn's bonus pay idea for teachers a great idea at face value!

NYC Council Chair and likely 2009 mayoral candidate Christine Quinn will push hard for a pilot program which would give highly qualified teachers bonus pay to work in tough schools in difficult areas, according to today's Daily Politics from the NY Daily News. The full text of the excerpt from tomorrow's State of the City speech appears below. This is a terrific (and politically smart) idea from Quinn, and as a future Councilman who wants to make education my number one priority, I can whole-heartedly support this initiative. I hope the UFT (and more important Mayor Bloomberg) give it the same support.

"As The Council's Middle School Task Force report showed, our middle schools are having great difficulty attracting and keeping qualified experienced teachers.

And as you might expect, the problem is most acute in the lowest performing schools in our poorest neighborhoods.

To turn around this situation I am proposing a pilot program for bonus pay to recruit and retain highly qualified, experienced teachers.

I am calling on the Department of Education and the education unions to come together to offer substantial salary incentives to teachers who are willing to work and stay in our most troubled middle schools.

Look, we have to admit that some schools are harder to teach in than others.

And if we are going to convince our best teachers to go there or stay there we have to be willing to experiment with different approaches to compensating them.

If this new approach works I will push hard to take it city-wide and guarantee every middle school student a great education. With innovative and cooperative efforts like this we are on the path to having schools that every New Yorker can feel confident in and proud of."

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