Leading Educational Organizations Release Guiding Principles for Teacher Compensation Programs

May 20, 2010

Collaboration is key to building
successful teacher compensation models


Miguel A. Gonzalez (NEA)
(202) 822-7823

Amy Vogt (AASA)
(703) 875-0723

Alexis Rice (NSBA)
(703) 838-6744

WASHINGTON—The American Association of School Administrators (AASA), the National Education Association (NEA), and the National School Boards Association (NSBA) jointly have developed 11 Guiding Principles that could be used for the Teacher Incentive Fund (TIF) grants to foster strong collaboration at the local level and appropriately implement the U.S. Department of Education federal grant program. The Guiding Principles are designed to offer guidance to the members of all three organizations if they choose to participate in the TIF grant program.

The three organizations will distribute these principles to their respective state and local leadership. Together, the organizations reach some 13,000 educational leaders, 3.2 million educators and 95,000 local school boards members across the United States.

Established in 2006, the TIF program provides grants to states and districts, or a combination of approved partnerships, to experiment with incentive compensation models in certain schools. The U.S. Department of Education released the final regulations today and applications are due July 6. The 11 guiding principles address what works best when designing incentive compensation models that fit within the TIF rules.

“These guiding principles recognize that incentive compensation must be a part of a systematic process for school improvement, as opposed to a stand-alone strategy,” said Dan Domenech, Executive Director of AASA. “In developing an effective plan, it is important to involve administrators, school board members and teachers and these groups must work together to garner community and stakeholder support.”

The three national organizations are encouraging their members to use the guiding principles as a roadmap if they choose to participate in the federal TIF grant program. At the core of the 11 guiding principles is the desire of the organizations to build a sustainable, comprehensive and continuous system of school improvement and organizational growth, highlighting in particular that successful and sustainable teacher compensation programs require collaboration and cooperation.

“Our three organizations recognize the importance of encouraging active dialogue among state and school district education leaders who choose to develop proposals for TIF grants,” said John Wilson, Executive Director of NEA. “These guiding principles encourage strong collaboration. They serve as a useful checklist that all stakeholders should take into account, starting with the solid foundation of professional-level salaries.”

Among other key components of effective incentive compensation systems, the groups are urging their members to incorporate these principles in their models: key stakeholder input and buy-in, research-based goals, multiple factors of assessment, transparency, proper alignment with organizational goals, benchmarking and timelines, fairness, research-driven outcomes, and, most importantly, adequate and sustainable funding. To increase student achievement, the organizations also are urging schools to provide the conditions that support teaching and learning such as time, curriculum, and professional development.

“A successful incentive compensation plan must foster collaboration with a broad base of support among teachers, school staff, administrators, school board members, and within the community,” said Anne L. Bryant, Executive Director of NSBA. “It is important that key national associations representing school boards, administrators, and teachers have come together to provide guidance to develop effective plans that support school improvement.”

Please visit www.nsba.org to see the 11 Guiding Principles.

About AASA
The American Association of School Administrators, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders across the United States. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to the highest quality public education for all children. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.

About NEA
The National Education Association is the nation's largest professional employee organization, representing 3.2 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers. For more information, please visit www.nea.org.

About NSBA
Founded in 1940, the National School Boards Association (www.nsba.org) is a not-for-profit organization representing state associations of school boards and their 95,000 local school board members throughout the United States. Its mission is to work with and through all its State Association members to foster excellence and equity in public education through school board leadership. NSBA achieves that mission by representing the school board perspective in working with federal government agencies and national organizations that impact education, and provides vital information and services to state associations of school boards throughout the nation.