Unfair bonuses for AP teachers

Should teachers get a bonus for how students perform in classes? That’s the question people are asking since The Arizona Republic story reported that advanced placement teachers
at PHS earn a $300 bonus for students who pass the AP exam. According to the
report, if an AP composition teacher has three students pass the AP composition
exam this year, they will earn a $900 bonus.

But according to Principal Dan Serrano, that is not exactly the case, “The teachers get $150 while the department gets the other $150.”

This law seems unfair to non AP teachers because teachers do work hard sometimes more than others, some teachers who are not AP struggle with money. If all the money was going to the district so schools can split it equally then this would be a better system. Throughout Arizona, schools will collect $3.8 million this school year as a state bonus if students pass
the AP exams. The Arizona Republic recorded that PHS is fourth on the list for earning
the most money, receiving $153,900 thousand, while another CUSD high school, Hamilton high earned $213,000 thousand.

“Teachers are all the same to me and work equally as hard,” assistant principal Heather Patterson

Although this seems unfair they do not rely on taxpayers’ money; around $2.9 million went to schools in Maricopa County, including charter schools, while other schools in Pima County received $673,200. It makes sense allowing schools who are not charter schools to be
allowed the bonuses because school is free for all kids. “Having taught both AP and on-level classes here at Perry, I have found that my AP classes demand much more time, energy, and effort on my part than my on-level classes do…” social studies department chair Jason Myers said.

The program has troubled a few critics who said it’s unfair to students who cannot afford a $94 exam fee. Teachers who get this opportunity because Arizona wants schools that are inner-city and low-performing to take AP classes; this encourages teachers to push students be in AP classes to bring out the best in them. Understanding teachers do go through more schooling to become an AP teacher it is understandable, why this law occurs and only is open to certain types of teachers. “Since students all take the same exam, I don’t think those distinctions need to be made.” Mr. Myers said.

It is hard for schools like Parker high and Salome high school, two public schools on the Westside of Arizona do not have AP classes. Teachers are unwilling to go to those schools because of how far it is from everything. Teachers endured extra training to become an AP teacher on top of their other training and schooling. Since this is a law, some schools are missing out on this opportunity to help their teachers and schools. I can see both sides of the argument but it’s when schools do not have AP teachers have enough passing students to make money it seems unfair. When this became a law, they should have made each school have at least a few AP teachers teaching at every school.