Rep. George Miller (CA), Former Chairman, House Education Committee Chairman
"In TAP, we see that you can bring people together. You can redesign a workplace to be high-performing and to be a team that can have embedded, ongoing, on-site professional development. It's about the mentoring of teachers, building teams, including the principals and peer observations. It's about sharing your talents, your tricks, your experience and your knowledge so that all of the teachers will be able to differentiate instruction based upon the needs of their schools."
Arne Duncan, U.S. Secretary of Education; Former Chicago Public Schools CEO, Chicago, Illinois
"High-quality teachers are critical to accelerating student achievement . . . TAP provides teachers and principals with the resources to grow individually and collectively as a school, ultimately benefiting our students."
Mary Landrieu, Former U.S. Senator (LA)
"TAP in Louisiana is providing strong results in student test scores. And just as important, it is improving the working environment for teachers, resulting in greater teacher satisfaction and collaboration that supports gains in teaching skills over time."
Bobby Jindal, Governor of Louisiana
"It's clear that the innovative reforms pursued by DeSoto Parish and North DeSoto Middle School are paying off for our students. Educators in DeSoto Parish and at North DeSoto Middle School have chosen to identify, reward, and keep excellent teachers through TAP, and they are better preparing their students to further their studies and enter the workforce."
Tim Pawlenty, Former Governor of Minnesota
"After parents, teachers are the biggest influence in the educational success of a child. Our current teacher pay system is outdated and it is not geared towards accountability for results. We need to treat teachers as professionals, not part of an assembly line from the 1940s. That is why I authored a statewide reform, based on TAP, to rightfully reward our best and brightest in the profession for increasing student achievement and provide professional development incentives to attract and retain high quality teachers. My QComp legislation—Quality Compensation for Quality Teachers—gives Minnesota's teachers the professional treatment they need and deserve."
Mick Zais, Former South Carolina Superintendent of Education
"Teacher effectiveness is critical to student success. If we are going to ensure that we have confident, capable and creative teachers in our classrooms, we have to find ways to recognize and reward outstanding performance. TAP is one way to do that. I applaud the schools that are implementing this innovative program."
Jim Rex, Former South Carolina Superintendent of Education
"Through these efforts [implementing TAP], we'll reach the tipping point of moving from a pilot project to a full-blown statewide model of reform. A performance-based compensation system, using value-added measures that are reliable and transparent, will ultimately affect achievement for all students. This will be a reform effort that involves teachers every step of the way, starting with their voting to implement the reform and continuing with teachers being the main decision-makers about their individual developmental needs and unique needs within their classroom. It will be a reflection of the power teachers hold over their professional growth as well as their compensation."
Paul Vallas, Former Superintendent, Recovery School District, Louisiana
"I'm a huge fan of TAP. The TAP model is a model that works. The greatest strength of the TAP model is the creation of local school leadership teams: the acknowledgment and recognition that principals alone cannot do it. You need strong leadership teams at the local level and you need to create a process by which the leadership teams could emerge from the most dynamic teachers."
Lanet Greenhaw, Richardson Independent School District Board Member, Texas
"The Richardson Board of Trustees believes participation in TAP directly supports the district's vision and goals. It is vital that local school board members support collaborative private-public partnerships that bring innovative programs, such as TAP, to public education. And we must urge state and national legislators to invest public dollars to fund TAP and other programs with proven track records for school improvement."
Eli Broad, Founder, The Broad Foundation
"TAP complements our own mission to dramatically improve K-12 urban education by increasing student achievement and closing achievement gaps. TAP's great promise is its focus on attracting and retaining the highest quality teacher talent, while providing tangible incentives through both professional development and performance-based compensation."
Thomas Toch and Robert Rothman, Researchers
Rush to Judgment: Teacher Evaluation in Public Education
"TAP combines comprehensive evaluations that teachers trust with performance pay. The program's comprehensive classroom evaluations legitimize performance pay in teachers' minds, and its performance-pay component gives teachers and administrators alike a compelling reason to take evaluations seriously. Pay and evaluations become mutually reinforcing, rather than mutually exclusive."
Lynn Gallagher, Master Teacher, Hazel Park/Hilda Knoff Elementary School, Lowell Milken TAP Founder’s Award Recipient 2009, Jefferson Parish, Louisiana
"TAP allows teachers to make instructional decisions and implement instructional practices that meet the needs of teachers and their students. What TAP recognizes and values is the multifaceted, dynamic nature of instructional practice. Students (and teachers) are complex and varying in their needs — teaching and learning is not a one-size-fits-all! Unlike prepackaged and top-down instructional mandates that are handed down to teachers, TAP provides educators with the skills, knowledge, and resources to formulate practices that are effective and successful for the students being served."
Margaret Spellings, Former U.S. Secretary of Education
"TAP lets teachers move up a career ladder while staying in their classrooms. Each year, teachers have the opportunity to improve their skills and take on more responsibilities. The program also rewards teachers who make a real difference in the classroom by improving student performance. When we treat teachers better, students perform better."
Erin Richard, Mentor Teacher, Lowery Intermediate School, Ascension Parish, Louisiana
"The TAP model provides the school with the means to systematically collect and use data to target areas of needed growth, track students and teachers, and use this data to adjust our steps in reaching our ultimate goals for student achievement. It's becoming more and more a well-oiled machine that has our faculty working together on a common focus. The collaboration among the leadership team, field testing and assistance that the master teachers provide for us and we provide for the career teachers offers a solid framework for everyone invested in this school towards attaining success."
Mike Huckabee, Former Governor of Arkansas
"True reform has to be about what happens in the classroom and the kind of opportunities we provide for our students. TAP equips our teachers with the resources to be successful by training them better and providing the salary incentives for them to achieve. It's not just about giving teachers better salaries, although no one would argue that that needs to happen, but it's first and foremost recognizing that when we train better teachers, it's easier to justify the better salaries. TAP gives us the capacity to do that very thing."
Eric Hanushek, Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University
"The evaluation of TAP schools clearly shows that teachers in the program are significantly better than the average teacher in regular public schools. More TAP teachers are above average in terms of student achievement gains. Fewer are far below. This finding is very notable given the importance of teachers to student achievement."
Inez Tenenbaum, Former South Carolina Superintendent of Education
"TAP is the result of innovative, outside-the-box thinking. I believe that it has the potential to transform the teaching profession."
Kathleen Karnes, Career Teacher, Holston Middle School, Knoxville, Tennessee
"Receiving useful evaluations from the master teachers allows me to concentrate on my strengths, and to bring up my weaknesses, which benefits me and my students. With TAP there is support, knowledge and recognition of achievement for teaching that every teacher needs. After thinking that I was a good teacher, TAP showed me there were so many other ways that I could improve. TAP benefits me professionally and personally."
Monica Knauer, Master Teacher, Dwight D. Eisenhower Academy of Global Studies, New Orleans, Louisiana
"TAP's professional development is ongoing. It's there on day one, the last day and every day in between. You have your weekly cluster meetings that teachers bring student work to, you have the weekly classroom support for teachers, you have the formal and informal observations taking place, and you have team teaching and modeling with mentor and master teachers."
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