Janesville teachers applaud school board vote to scrap teacher ‘merit pay’ system linked to Educator Effectiveness program

The Janesville Education Association applauded a unanimous decision by the school board this week to scrap a system that tied teacher compensation to the state’s Educator Effectiveness program. The system had been put in place over teachers’ strong objections, and the board has now concluded that it has been ineffective, created large amounts of paperwork and discouraged teachers from taking innovative approaches to education.

Following this week’s school board action, a group of administrators, teachers and others will meet to develop a new system for determining pay raises.

“The JEA applauds the current school board for untying Educator Effectiveness and teacher compensation,” said Janesville Education Association President Dave Groth, a science teacher at Janesville Parker High School. “The JEA’s goal was to work with the district to create a teacher compensation system that attracted and retained the best teachers for the students in Janesville’s schools. Despite the JEA’s objections, the district administration and school board insisted on trying a ‘merit’ pay system that incorporated the Educator Effectiveness evaluation system. Educator Effectiveness was not designed to be linked to compensation, and history tells us that so-called merit pay does not work in education.”

Groth said the JEA looks forward to working collaboratively with school district administrators and board members “to create a teacher compensation system that is fair, predictable and rewards loyalty to the district and professional development to ensure the children in Janesville school district have the best professional educators.”

“We also look forward to a transition to a new system that makes sure all teachers are treated fairly,” Groth said.