Over the last couple of years there has been talk of the government introducing performance pay for teachers. Hekia Parata officially put forward the idea in May 2012. She claimed then that performance pay would be “the best way to lift education standards” (3 News 19 May 2012). International research disproves this claim.
The Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) was commissioned to look into this issue in greater detail. The ACER research examined all known approaches to rewarding teachers.
It concluded that basing incentives on student assessment outcomes such as national standards is deeply flawed, and is yet to work anywhere in the developed world. The research instead proposed a system that rewarded good teaching practice on the basis of rigorous appraisal against professional standards or criteria.
Interestingly, the approach being taken by NZEI with the Career Pathways model is exactly this. The Advanced Classroom Expertise Teacher (ACET) bases additional teacher remuneration on an independent attestation of the expertise skilled teachers bring to their daily classroom practice.