The idea of a merit pay for teachers is based on the fact that different school teachers provide different quality of teaching. In the last 20 years every state adopted some kind of a legislation related to the quality of K12 of education.
And yet, a multi-billion industry of higher education has no – zero, zilch – accountability for the quality of services it provides.
Oh, I know! It's called “academic freedom” - one of many freedoms Americans enjoy.
Like freedom to bear arms. Well, maybe this is not a good example, because the majority of Americans really wants to limit this freedom.
Maybe, like a freedom of speech? But even this freedom has limits placed by a libel law.
And why academic freedom is being executed in the most opaque way?
I grew up in an authoritarian country under ruling of one party. But even then most of the party meetings were open to public. I worked in four educational institutions and in all of them almost all faculty meetings were open to staff – in fact, staff was encouraged to participate. When I moved to Boston, one of the biggest surprises was the fact the U.S. Academy operates the same way as Freemasonry. Still do not understand – why? And when I was a student, like every student in USSR, I attended weekly army preparation activities. I remember our colonel told us: "In the Army, a general makes the decision, but a private is the one who speaks the first". Makes to me a perfect sense in terms of efficient management (e.g. "Professional Communication: a case study").
The fact of the matter is that when we think about K12 school teachers, we know some of them are bad.
But when we think about higher ed, our brain suddenly stops thinking about teachers/instructors/professors – only students can be bad.
if you are a politician (or want to be one), remember - 2020 is an election year!