News Story

How ‘Ineffective’ Michigan Teachers Get $26k More Than ‘Highly Effective’ Ones

Research shows more letters after a teacher’s name won’t help, but districts pay for them anyway

Under the Utica Community Schools teachers' contract, a teacher deemed “ineffective” can collect as much as $26,000 more each year than a colleague of equivalent seniority who is rated “highly effective.” The difference is due to extra compensation given to teachers who have accumulated academic credentials beyond a bachelors degree, which is a common practice statewide.

The non-profit public policy think tank Brookings Institution stated, "the fact that teachers with master’s degrees are no more effective in the classroom, on average, than their colleagues without advanced degrees is one of the most consistent findings in education research."