Note: Michael Bromley, a teacher in Washington, DC, is guest-posting this week.
My colleagues groan when I say it, and then tell me to shut up: teachers are over-paid. Truly, we are. To argue that teachers are underpaid defies logic and means nothing: based on what? Oh, teachers are socially important, so they should be well-paid. Okay, measure that importance for me, will ya? Let's see, if I fail five fewer kids this year will you give me a raise? That won't work. What if I passed 'em all? Hmm. As with all attempts to quantify, measure, and manage education, there is no true, consistent, or constant baseline from which to measure teacher value. Even if we do attach pay to performance, from what baseline do we start and why?