Title II of the Higher Education Act addresses higher-education-based teacher preparation programs. It's getting some attention this year. Just how do we want to spend our education funds?
Sen. McCain pledges to devote 60 percent of Title II funding for incentive bonuses for high performing teachers. He says payments would be made directly to teachers. 35% would be used by principals as they see fit for professional development. 5% would be used to recruit teachers graduating in the top 25%.
Sen. Obama has proposed a broad based series of reform plans around improving teacher recruitment, preparation, retention, and salary, including Teaching Service Scholarships, Professional Development Schools, and mentoring programs. He calls for significant increases in public school teacher salaries to $100,000 to reflect a professional status similar to other professions.
In Obama's Innovation Districts for School Improvement Act, he includes provisions for a Career Ladder initiative, from Novice, Career, Mentor, to Master Teacher. Because of shortages in teachers certified in the critical areas of math and science, Obama has proposed offering pay differentials to teachers qualified in these areas.
He has also proposed a merit pay schedule, in which teacher salary and evaluations of "effectiveness" will be based in part on measurements of improvement in student achievement data on standardized tests.
Source: Allen Jan Baird Ph.D., Obama, the Next Education President? EducationNews.org: http://ednews.org/articles/28450/1/Obama-the-Next-Education-President/Page1.html
I ask again, just how do we want to spend our education funds?