Beyond Classroom Walls: Developing Innovative Work Roles for Teachers

The job of “teacher” in most schools today remains centered on full-time classroom responsibilities that are defined by the location, timing, and schedule of the school day and a one-teacher-per-classroom model. But particularly in today’s budget climate, interest in quality-focused job redesigns is increasing among forward-thinking state, district, and charter school leaders. This report, prepared by Public Impact for the Center for American Progress, profiles two organizations—the Rocketship Education network of charter schools and the Fairfax County, Virginia, school district.

Seizing Opportunity at the Top

Public Impact’s report—and related policy brief, presentation, and checklist—explains why every child needs excellent teachers year after year; how schools can put excellent teachers in charge of more children’s learning while offering new roles to other teachers in which they, too, can be excellent; and what changes policymakers must support to make these ideas a reality.  

Opportunity at the Top

Public Impact’s report explores the potential impact of policy initiatives designed to improve student access to great teachers. Current policy initiatives overlook the most obvious, immediate source of improved teaching effectiveness: the great teachers we already have. The top 25 percent of U.S. teachers—more than 800,000 of them—already achieve results that would enable all of our children to meet and exceed standards.

Strategic Design of Teacher Compensation

With national focus on reforming teacher evaluation and development, school districts are finding themselves in need of rethinking how teachers are compensated and how to tie this compensation to attracting and keeping high-quality teachers, all while making the new system sustainable. This report by Education Resource Strategies combines a series of memos and explores standard goals of redesigning compensation and its implications for base salary, district priority incentives, school roles, rewards, and fiscal sustainability. This resource seeks to provide a starting point. 

Rethinking the Value Proposition to Improve Teacher Effectiveness

This report is one in a series of four on rethinking teacher compensation. It examines the experiences and offerings given to a teacher by the school system. Education Resource Strategies examines how this value proposition is structure and how it can be leveraged into a strong management tool for attracting and retaining high-performing teachers. 

Improving Teaching Through Pay for Contribution

Despite proliferating chatter about the need to reform teacher compensation, the bulk of teacher pay remains fundamentally unchanged. This report by Public Impact and published by the NGA Center for Best Practices sets forth a guiding principle for moving from talk to action—“pay for contribution.” Pay for contribution means investing more in teachers and teaching roles that contribute measurably more to student learning. Pay for contribution is particularly attractive to higher contributors.

First-Year Principals in Urban Districts: How Actions and Working Conditions Relate to Outcomes

This RAND report examines the actions and working conditions experienced by first-year principals and connects these factors to subsequent school achievement and principal retention. By researching the experiences of first-year principals in six districts, the report seeks to understand relationships among student achievement outcomes, new principals’ likelihood of staying at their schools and their reports about school conditions, attitudes, and their own practices.

Re-Imagining State Policy: A Guide to Building Systems That Support Effective Principals

New Leaders assembled a guide to the state’s role in each of the policy areas that affect school leadership—specifically principals. The paper identifies opportunities available for state leaders to improve policies designed to attract and ultimately retain and empower the best school leaders who will drive students toward success. The document advocates for the adoption of high-quality principal performance standards, which would align the vision across the entire human capital system from pipeline development to reward or dismissal. 

Keeping Irreplaceables in D.C. Public Schools

The New Teacher Project’s case study provides an in-depth look at retention strategies that it first examined in The Irreplaceables and specifically examines how these strategies are being executed in District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS). The paper illustrates how DCPS, by raising expectations and removing consistently low-performing teachers, has progressed toward more effective teacher retention.

The Irreplaceables

This study by The New Teacher Project, which looks at 1.4 million students across four urban school districts, directs its focus on the experiences of some of the highest performing teachers. That is, teachers who have had so much success in boosting student learning that they are essentially “irreplaceable.” The study found that the most successful and unsuccessful teachers exit urban schools at similar rates, as schools rarely make a strong effort to keep the best ones. This leads to about 10,000 “irreplaceables” in the 50 largest districts leaving each year. 


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