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I would like to direct readers to a paper I wrote several years ago on the issue of teacher quality.  Here is the link.

Critical Inputs–An Economic and Historical Exploration of Teacher Quality

Also, here is a link to SB-736, the Florida Senate Bill on teacher merit pay and tenure which recently passed in the Florida House and is widely expected to be signed into law by Governor Rick Scott.

The paper includes a section on merit pay for teachers, and it discusses various inputs to teacher quality.  In short, the paper argues that teacher quality cannot be ignored as an economic input for education.

I will not comment any further on this now but may discuss it more later, perhaps in response to discussions or comments it elicits among readers of this site.  At this point, I ask that if you read this paper, you not ascribe a particular opinion or preference to me about the current bill.  The paper was, as its title indicates, an exploration of this topic and not a set of recommendations or definitive, specific conclusions; and, as I said, it was written years ago.  This does not mean that I do not have an opinion on the topic at hand, but that I would like to encourage a substantive, thoughtful, rational, and respectful discussion of this topic, as it is now upon us in a very real–and no longer theoretical–way.


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