Here’s a new advance screening of the disingenuous advertising campaign being planned for NC teacher merit pay

Here’s your advanced screening of the sequel of Maureen Stover’s Pathways to Excellence testimonial video (I shared version 1.0 earlier this month). 

The video is part of an advertising series that now-infamous marketing firm Eckel and Vaughan is putting together to try to sell merit pay for North Carolina teachers. 

Stover serves as co-chair for the PEPSC Advancement and Development subcommittee and has also agreed to sit on the Board of Directors of Eckel and Vaughan’s UpliftEd Coalition, a group which is being formed to drum up support for the controversial plan.

In the first part of her video, Mrs. Stover talks about the importance of shifting from valuing “inputs” (certificates/credentials) to “outputs” in order to gauge teacher effectiveness.  This represents a shift from her first video when Stover complained about not getting paid for her two master’s degrees when she moved to North Carolina. However, it is in line with comments she has made in PEPSC subcommittee meetings:

Screenshot of Southern Regional Education Board notes on PEPSC subcommittee meeting.
More info here.

The latter portion of Stover’s testimonial is essentially the same song from version 1.0. 

Stover mentions how important it is to her to stay in the classroom because she is in it for the kids, saying the only current way to grow as a teacher is to become an administrator.  She says it would be “incredible” if teachers had opportunities to grow by mentoring other teachers and says she is “extremely excited” that North Carolina is now looking for ways to make that happen.

If you work in schools you probably know that mentoring is already a thing.  What we don’t have is time or money to do it well.  That’s not a problem requiring merit pay to fix.

Of course, Eckel and Vaughan’s advertising campaign isn’t going to be about the truth.  It’s going to be about finding messaging that will aid in getting a system of merit pay passed into state law.

This is not it.


You can view the video and a transcript below:

My name is Maureen Stover, and I am the 2020 Burroughs Wellcome Fund North Carolina Teacher of the Year.

One of the things that is a challenge for teachers coming into North Carolina is that we don’t always do a good job of effectively identifying skills that teachers have that they are bringing to their classrooms from outside of the education world.  

So instead of looking just at inputs, something like a certificate or a credential that’s been earned, it’s important we’re also looking at the outputs to see how teachers are using that information that they have learned through those different courses to effectively teach their kids.  

There are many different opportunities for us to fully support our teachers and to have programs that will make teachers more impactful for their students in their classrooms.

Under the current North Carolina licensure system, the only real opportunity for me to grow and develop as part of my teaching practice would be to go into administration.  But as a classroom teacher, I am in the room for the kids.  And so I really want to remain a classroom teacher so that I can help them develop in their social-emotional learning and their academic learning needs.

When we have teachers who are excited to be in their classrooms, excited to be with their students, and excited to deliver instruction, it means that we have teachers who are going to impact their students in a positive way.  

One thing that would be incredible would be to give teachers the opportunity to lead not only in their classrooms but also among their peers by providing mentorship to other teachers that are also working in their schools.  And I am extremely excited that we are looking for ways to begin developing teachers and providing advancement opportunities for teachers who want to stay in the classroom and continue teaching their students and doing the best things that we need to do for all 1.5 million kids that are enrolled in North Carolina’s public schools.

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