Dutch launch plan to reward teaching excellence
A pilot project to reward top-grade teachers, including paying them prime salaries, was launched in the Netherlands on Thursday, the Dutch education ministry announced.
"School principals can from today ask to take part in in an experiment to reward teaching excellence," the ministry said in a press release.
The project is to run for six months to a year and involves more than 1,600 teachers around the Dutch capital Amsterdam and the southern Zeeland province.
Some 10 million euros (U$ 13.5 million) have been budgeted for the project.
"Until now there has been no investigation in the Netherlands over the impact of rewarding excellence in education," Education State Secretary Halbe Zijlstra said.
"In this way, rewarding and acknowledging great performance breaks with the culture of equality and turns excellent teachers into role models."
Teachers will be evaluated including on their ability to "pull a student up," improving professionalism or an ability to work with colleagues," Zijlstra said in a letter to the Lower House of parliament.
Schools involved in the project will receive up to 1,700 euros per year for every full participant taking part.
"There is no fixed amount per teacher," department spokesman Job Slok told AFP.
In agreement with the project's supervisors, independent of the education ministry, principals will then be able to decide on an appropriate reward for teachers including financial bonuses, a class trip or additional equipment.
© 2011 AFP