U.S. Department of Education tests whether teacher bonuses work

In Tennessee, 13 school districts are testing the effectiveness of educator bonus pay in helping to improve students' test scores and teacher retention. The pilot, overseen by the U.S. Department of Education, distributed $437 million in Teacher Incentive Grants last year nationwide, including $36 million for Tennessee. Some cite previous research in questioning if the bonuses will have an effect on students' scores, but acknowledge it could help recruit and retain teachers in Tennessee, where some teachers have gone four years with minimal pay increases.

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