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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Jeb likes student performance pay, too



Iw_bush031807 Say this for the former guv: He doesn't mind controversy. Jeb Bush supported performance pay for teachers while he was in office, and now that he's out of office, he's quietly giving a thumbs up to performance pay for students.

A press release sent out Friday afternoon by Bush's Foundation for Florida’s Future (sorry we didn't mention it sooner; if you can’t tell, it's pretty much all-evolution-all-the-time) congratulates Florida for again posting some of the highest AP participation and passage rates in the country (see Gradebook post here), and then offers a few suggestions on how Florida can do even better, including offering cash bonuses to students.

"Bonuses for student performance have been tested for more than a decade, and results show this type of incentive works," reads the statement from Patricia Levesque, the foundation's executive director. The statement mentions a Dallas program that was started in 1996 to boost AP participation and passage rates, and notes that some other big-city school districts are following suit. (Former Florida Education Commissioner John Winn, a Bush ally, is deeply involved with these efforts at his new gig. See Gradebook post here.)

The Foundation statement offered two other ideas: 1) Removing the $2,000 cap on bonuses for AP teachers (right now, they get $50 for each student who passes an AP test, up to $2,000), and 2) requiring all schools to offer at least four core AP courses (according to the foundation, only half of Florida’s high schools do so).

- Ron Matus, state education reporter

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:34am]


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