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Tuesday, January 12, 2010 - 7:00am

Perdue: Change How Teachers Are Paid

Governor Sonny Perdue wants to base teachers' pay on their students’ performance rather than on advanced degrees as it is now.

Currently, the higher degree and more experience in the classroom a public school teacher has, the higher the pay.

But new legislation introduces a model where teachers’ raises would depend on classroom observation and student growth. The model would apply to new teachers; current teachers could opt in.

President of the Georgia Association of Educators Jeff Hubbard says he’s waiting for details.

"So they’d opt in. They’d be put in a salary scale and then whether or not they received raises would be based 50 percent on student achievement and 50 percent is other…and the problem is we don’t know what other is right now. Is it a state evaluation with class keys? Would it be peer review? We just don’t know yet."

Another concern… says Hubbard… the new plan takes away the monetary incentive for higher learning.

"Advanced degrees would mean nothing in regard to additional pay. Wherever you opt in on the salary scale is where you would be, so we have a concern with that. We think you should be rewarded for additional professional learning."

The Governor wants the the so called performance pay system in place by 2014.