The Fordham Institute has a new report out on the Achievement School District (ASD) in Tennessee that lays out its origins and progress to date. When schools become a part of the recovery school district, they leave their original district -- and it's rules and contracts -- behind. What does that mean for teachers? The short answer is, it's too soon to tell, but early indications are promising.
Chris Barbic, the Superintendent of the ASD is putting in place many of the reform strategies we often recommend. New teachers are selected through a rigorous selection process and have concrete, defined leadership opportunities. They're evaluated and paid based on student performance and principal observations. Starting salaries are around $40,000 and can grow to as much as $90,000 for teacher leaders (as opposed to topping out at just under $73,000 with a Ph.D. in Memphis City Schools). The report notes that the ASD has "the goal of being the best place to work." We look forward to seeing if teachers agree.