Bonus Pay - For Principals!

Today’s news is dominated by the Mayor’s release of a proposed $5 million principal incentive pay plan, the details and effectiveness of which is uncertain.  What do you think? Plus lots of other tidbits:

Emmanuel Secures $5 million for CPS principals’ merit pay Chicago Tribune:  Mayor Rahm Emanuel has made principal recruitment, training and evaluation a centerpiece of his overhaul of Chicago Public Schools.

Bonuses and performance contracts for principals WBEZ:  Despite a budget crisis that is forcing hundreds of millions in cuts, the cancellation of teachers’ raises and a planned tax hike, Chicago Public…

Merit Pay for Principals Prompts Questions CNC: CPS CEO Jean-Claude Brizard said he expected the performance bonuses will range from about $5,000 to $10,000 per principal.

Officials offer new details about principal merit pay, performance contracts Catalyst: Clarice Berry, president of the Chicago Principals and Administrators Association, was miffed that officials invited her to stand up at the press conference without indicating merit pay or performance contracts would be announced.

State Rep. Dan Burke gave tuition award to ex-secretary’s daughter Sun Times:  A joint investigation by the Chicago Sun-Times and Better Government Association has raised unanswered questions about how State Rep. Dan Burke’s ex-secretary’s daughter received a legislative scholarship.

Mob-Connected Company Working at CPS MyFox Chicago: If kids want a real lesson in how Chicago works, they should visit their schoolyards now, where they’ll find dumpsters and equipment from one of the city’s most visible mob-connected …

Urban Cities Group Backs Education School Review EdWeek: Though CGCS believes the review is being conducted transparently, Casserly writes, “we are concerned that your data-collection process may make it difficult to get a complete picture of the field.”

New law lets Illinois schools treat students with severe allergic reaction: Gov. Pat Quinn signed a law Monday authorizing school officials to give an epinephrine shot to any student suffering a severe allergic reaction. The legislation follows the December death of Chicago Public Schools student Katelyn Carlson, who had an…

Schools will be able to opt out of “mandatory” recess, but criteria unclear Catalyst: Putting recess in every school, then, would likely rest on a renegotiation of that contract. Teachers’ current contract expires June 30, 2012, just before the switch to mandatory recess is supposed to take place.



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  • Bonus pay for principals was tried some time ago. (I think it was when Gilligan was head of high schools). I remember a faculty member stumbled across a confidential document that rewarded principals for reaching certain goals. Those goals were very difficult to obtain. Each goal had a value and if all were reached it was about 10K. Few if any cashed in. What we did see iwas how school policy was radically bent by the principal to reach these lucrative goals.

  • Guaranteed way to predict future CPS policy:

    If a policy or plan or pilot has been proven unsuccessful in CPS and/or in other school districts then CPS will adopt that policy or plan.

  • Sigh. The Performance Evaluation Reform Act of 2010 (PERA) already mandates CPS to develop a new principal evaluation plan (in the name of, you know, accountability), along with one for teachers.

    CPS hasn't done so yet. Wouldn't it have made more sense to develop--with the principals association and CTU as partners--the PERA plans *first* before going off half-cocked on other "performance" plans?

    Or, how many performance plans will there be? For principals, one for the LSC; a second for PERA; and a third one for merit pay.

    Can't we develop ONE good plan that everyone buys into, and then use it?

    I'm afraid that the same backward approach used for principals will be used in developing the teacher plans.

  • In reply to Danaidh:

    "Can't we develop ONE good plan that everyone buys into, and then use it?"

    No. We can't. CPS does not value, respect, or work with its professionals.

    Not to mention that the mayor and his schools team are so blinded by ideology that any plan including stakeholder buy-in is by definition unacceptable.

  • Why is Penny Pritzker and her hubby so "up in" "public education"? Would someone explain it to me?


    Here's a thread at Second City Cop about this announcement.

  • None of this is new - the performance policy and the My Voice, My School surveys have been around for years now. The performance policy is currently used in principal evaluation; they have just added a bonus element to it.

    Not really a big story here. The teacher "performance" policy is currently being developed with CTU - it is either Charlotte Danielson or the Teaching for Learning Framework. No big hoopla here either. The state assessments will be changing in 2015 to interim exams quarterly for each grade level (subject to change), so there should be no issue with connecting evaluations with student performance - an issue that would not be so crystal clear if the state planned on continuing the PSAE as is.

  • Merit pay was tried in North Carolina for Doctors. Doctors started not take the most complicated cases. Let's be honest. You will see cherry picking of students. It would not be surprising of seeing principals turning away students that are not desirable.

    Merit pay is a canard and BS offering. Rahm, market BS gimmicks don't work!

  • In reply to Anonymous:

    And, this is not the case now? People concerned only with themselves will always act disreputably.

    Instead of bonuses, most administrators would just like a system thhat doesn't overwork them.

  • In reply to Anonymous:

    I think the reason they won't work is because some principals don't really control things the way they should. In many schools its the teachers and PTA that really run the show. This would mean that principals would have to come out of their offices, walk around classrooms, really look at teachers work and oh start really dealing with bullying in their schools by both TEACHERS, STAFF and STUDENTS and stop brushing in under the carpet. Hire competent social social workers to actually work rather than sit on their duffs and hand out information printed out from the internet - Why should they be rewarded for doing their JOBS

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