A Case for Incentive Pay

Larry Sand makes the case for merit or incentive pay in the California Policy Center while teacher union officials defend a pay structure that rewards even ineffective teachers and awards outstanding teachers the same pay.

When I first began to substitute teach in Los Angeles in 1985, I learned about “incentive pay.” If a sub was willing to go to “schools in need,” he could earn about 40 percent more than a regular sub. Rather impecunious at the time, I jumped at the opportunity. And the incentive, also known as “combat pay,” is still in force, but it’s only available for subs.