Why do unions oppose merit pay?
Merit pay is usually defined as the amount of payment one is able to acquire basing on his or her performance at work. This type of payment is most commonly acquainted within the context of educational reform, whereby a change occurs in the way individual are exposed to information. With certain criteria laid out, the concept of merit pay motivates workers to perform their tasks in a more efficient manner, since this is considered to be a bonus kind of pay. In some countries, this kind of payment is given by the government to public school teachers such as in the country of the United Kingdom.
The use of merit pay has been on constant debate as to whether this method should be supported or not. For those in favor, merit pay is one good strategy in attracting teachers, especially in schools which are considered to be belonging to the low socioeconomic status. This technique also alleviates problem regarding teacher retention, as this motivates them in living the profession. As currently supported by the president of the United States of America, Obama sees merit pay as one concept that places, both teachers and the government, at an advantage. However, unions have opposed on this concept. The reason for their opposition is that such concept creates problems from teachers to students. It has been claimed that merit pays include problems such as poor teacher morale due to increased competition among other teachers and a waste of time and money in the administration of the merit pay plans. More so, evidences are scarce in proving that such kind of incentive programs is sufficient enough in improving teachers’ performances and students’ achievements.
In this light, teachers must be evaluated in a way that does not employ biases.