The Living Curriculum Model and Compensation

Teacher compensation that makes sense

The driving force behind The Living Curriculum Model was to find ways to compensate teachers who are making a significant difference in the lives of students and the school itself, and not just based on years served, degrees earned, titles achieved, or standardized test scores. After all, it is possible for a teacher with one less degree, or five years less experience, to have a greater impact on student learning and their lives in general.

Compensation starts with evaluation

The Living Curriculum Model process starts with classroom observations, scoring teachers against a broad range of criteria. As a user of the online application, you have the ability to tailor the criteria and language to your own goals, but a good set of criteria will show how versatile the teacher is in all areas of their position, from knowledge of their subject, to how well they are prepared, teaching methods, and finally student interaction.

The Evaluators

So who is doing the evaluating? It depends on your own situation and resources, but for the richest model we recommend administrators, department heads, and then the teachers themselves. Student surveys can add another important gauge to the overall success a teacher is having in the classroom.

The Evaluations

The final evaluation score is based on more than just a series of criteria. It really is an aggregate of classroom observations, student surveys, versatility or the number of courses they can teach, goal-setting and a teacher’s support of their goals and progress.

The compensation model is a consensus

After each of the evaluators has scored their teachers, they meet as a team to compare, discuss, and come to a consensus and final score for each teacher. This approach provides checks-and-balances to limit any bias or prejudice in the final outcome and brings the heart and personal consideration to the evaluation. Traditionally, the last phase of the process is a written narrative about the teacher that brings all pieces together and provides a final determination of where that teacher is both professionally and how they should be compensated.

Evaluations determine levels

The final salary, or pay increase, is tied to one of four levels the teacher attains based on the evaluation scores. For a teacher to advance to another level, a set percentage of criteria must be scored.