Sutherland Institute lauds Ogden School District’s decision

For Immediate Release: July 8, 2011

SALT LAKE CITY – Sutherland Institute lauds Ogden School District’s decision to take steps toward creating a performance-based pay system over the next six years.

“The focus should always be on providing the best educational experience for children and parents, which means, in part, finding and rewarding the best teachers,” said Derek Monson, manager of public policy for Sutherland. “Handing out automatic pay raises to all teachers based on years served, without regard to effectiveness, makes it very difficult for school districts to reward excellent teachers and fails to incentivize teachers trying to excel. If the pay raise is coming anyway, that is just one more reason to not put in the effort.”

Monson authored a 17-page report in January 2009 that encouraged schools to move to a comprehensive, performance-based pay system that included an end to collective bargaining negotiations and the use of performance reviews done by principals to evaluate and reward teachers. The system of performance reviews would incorporate multiple measures, including student test scores, classroom observations, input from fellow teachers and parental input. Performance reviews could also consider factors such as class size and the family and economic background of students of a given teacher. Additionally, the paper recommends an appeals process for teachers who are not satisfied with their performance review.

The full essay can be found at

Sutherland Institute is a conservative, state-based, independent public policy organization located in Salt Lake City. Its mission: protecting the cause of freedom, constructively influencing Utah’s decision makers, and promoting responsible citizenship. Sutherland Institute is recognized as the leading conservative think tank in the state of Utah.