Thursday, February 11, 2010

Terry Grier has good idea in Houston: no more big bucks for master's degrees

See all Terry Grier posts.

A teacher I knew went through a masters degree program that was remarkable for both the minuscule effort required and the very large amount of money demanded by a "diploma factory." I was amazed when she recounted a conversation she had with someone, ending the story with the words, "But I didn't mention that I have a masters degree." I thought it was astounding that she believed she had a real masters degree.

Research has recently shown that advanced degrees do not improve teaching.

Districts Consider Ending Salary Perk for Teachers
By Ericka Mellon, Houston Chronicle (MCT)
February 10, 2010

Houston-area school districts spend tens of millions of dollars a year on teachers with advanced degrees that studies show don't produce better student achievement.

But with money tight, a handful of districts are considering ditching the traditional salary bump for teachers with master's degrees in favor of pay based more on student learning. The Houston Independent School District and the top-rated YES Prep charter school chain are among those looking to experiment.

"I would like us to look with our teachers and see whether or not those dollars could be spent in a more productive way," HISD Superintendent Terry Grier said...


Anonymous said...

Maura Larkins, you must be on crack if you think that a masters degree in education leads to a huge increase in pay in most states. In Texas it equals a mire $500 a year. Over the course of a teacher's career, that might pay off the student loans necessary to pay for the degree to begin with. There are a great many of us graduate level educated teachers that studied hard to get our Masters degree at quality universities. We didn't attend The University of Phoenix on our cell phone. Please stop insulting well educated, dedicated, hard working teachers everywhere.

Maura Larkins said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Maura Larkins said...

The rewards for a masters degree were a lot more than $500 a year in the district I worked in. But where did you get the idea that I would insult well educated, dedicated hard-working teachers? If you didn't go to a diploma mill, then you did more work than those who do attend diploma mills. Do you think it made you a better teacher? I don't think having a masters degree has anything at all to do with being dedicated or hard-working.