Iowa’s Teacher Leadership and Compensation Program
The Iowa Teacher Leadership and Compensation (TLC) program was launched in the 2014–15 academic year with the following five goals:
- Attract able and promising new teachers by offering competitive starting salaries and offering short-term and long-term professional development and leadership opportunities.
- Retain effective teachers by providing enhanced career opportunities.
- Promote collaboration by developing and supporting opportunities for teachers in schools and school districts statewide to learn from each other.
- Reward professional growth and effective teaching by providing pathways for career opportunities that come with increased leadership responsibilities and involve increased compensation.
- Improve student achievement by strengthening instruction.
The Iowa Department of Education (DE) contracted AIR to evaluate TLC in June 2015. The evaluation was designed to inform the DE about the progress of the TLC initiative and its effectiveness in meeting its goals.
This brief highlights interim findings from early implementation of the TLC program to provide the DE with initial feedback on TLC progress toward intended goals. The brief includes findings on implementation progress from teacher and administrator surveys, interviews, and focus groups and includes results of initial analyses of student achievement. These findings, which include that respondents from TLC districts reported greater perceived effectiveness of teacher leadership roles, greater quality of supports for teachers and teacher leaders, and greater frequency of collaboration, are considered interim because the evaluation is in progress, with additional data on TLC implementation to collect and analyze over the next two years.