Teacher Performance Pay


To meet the continued demand for educational reform, the state of Florida enacted legislation in 1998 that required school boards to base a portion of the salary for school administrators and instructional personnel on performance. Although ahead of the required statutory timeline, the School District of Lee County implemented a teacher performance pay plan during the 1998–1999 school year as a result of Florida's legislative direction. The problem of this study was to determine the perceptions of Southwest Florida school-based certified staff regarding the implementation of teacher performance pay in a school district where performance pay had been in operation for the five years prior to this study. The population of this study consisted of the certified school-based personnel employed by the School District of Lee County, Florida. A random sample of 1,000 members was selected from the instructional population. Additionally, this study included the entire population of 176 school-based administrators for an overall sample of 1,176 members. Participants were asked to complete the survey instrument, Teacher Performance Pay Attitudinal Survey designed by the researcher. This instrument was developed to fit the unique requirements and specific nature of this study. Although intended to motivate teachers, the teacher performance pay plan examined in this study was perceived by instructional staff and administrators as not motivating. Findings of this study also show that most teachers and other instructional respondents disagree that teacher performance pay provides an incentive to work harder toward improving student achievement. Additionally, a majority of the instructional respondents did not agree that performance pay encouraged them to participate in staff development or motivated them to change their instructional practice. Finally, most respondents, both instructional and administrative, did not agree that the current performance pay system was fair. These findings suggest that the performance pay program of the current study may have fallen short of its intended goal. This study also found many differences in perceptions of teacher performance pay among the demographic variables. These differences were particularly significant in several survey areas to include the respondent's years of experience, union status, and position. Findings in this study suggest that performance plan design should clearly connect the compensation reward to performance so that educators understand the performance level required. The findings of this study also suggest that improving the alignment between the performance pay plan and school goals should be a consideration in any future plan revision.


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Graduation Date





House, Jess


Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


College of Education


Educational Research, Technology, and Leadership

Degree Program

Educational Leadership








Release Date

December 2004

Length of Campus-only Access


Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)