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Performance Pay for Teachers: Linking Individual and Organisational Level Targets


  • Richard Belfield
  • David Marsden


The introduction of performance-related pay and performance management schemes in the maintained, state, school sector represents a considerable change in the school management system. This paper combines the results of opinion surveys of classroom and head teachers with Department for Education and Skills school performance data to consider the operation and impact of the new system in England since 2000. We find that teachers' response to the new system closely resembles that of other groups of public service workers to similar schemes. In particular, teachers appear not to be greatly motivated by the financial-incentive element of the system. However, the goal-setting and appraisal aspect of the system is steadily establishing itself in schools, and seems to be giving rise to a better alignment of teacher and school objectives and with those of nationallevel policy objectives. We present tentative evidence that improvements in goal setting within schools are positively related to rising pupil academic performance.

Suggested Citation

  • Richard Belfield & David Marsden, 2005. "Performance Pay for Teachers: Linking Individual and Organisational Level Targets," CEP Discussion Papers dp0703, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:cepdps:dp0703

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Edward P. Lazear, 2000. "Performance Pay and Productivity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1346-1361, December.
    2. Marsden, David, 2000. "Teachers before the 'threshold'," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3641, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    3. Atkinson, Adele & Burgess, Simon & Croxson, Bronwyn & Gregg, Paul & Propper, Carol & Slater, Helen & Wilson, Deborah, 2009. "Evaluating the impact of performance-related pay for teachers in England," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 251-261, June.
    4. David Marsden, 2004. "The Role of Performance-Related Pay in Renegotiating the “Effort Bargain†: The Case of the British Public Service," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 57(3), pages 350-370, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Richard Belfield & David Marsden, 2006. "Pay for Performance Where Output is Hard to Measure: the Case of Performance Pay for School Teachers," CEP Discussion Papers dp0747, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.

    More about this item


    Education; teachers; performance related pay; public sector; compensation; industrial relations;

    JEL classification:

    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods
    • J45 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Public Sector Labor Markets
    • M52 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - Compensation and Compensation Methods and Their Effects

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