Before resigning as school chancellor in 2010, Michelle Rhee had already put in place a sweeping strategy that rated teachers' effectiveness in Washington D.C. on a numerical scale. The worst teachers were fired; successful teachers were given substantial bonuses (up to $25,000) and the district invested in instructional coaches in hopes of fostering teacher growth. Rhee's plan, known as Impact, evaluated nearly 6,500 school-based personnel in Washington.
A new study released Thursday by researchers at Stanford University and the University of Virginia concluded that the controversial plan improved the city's teacher workforce.
Rhee's successor Kaya Henderson told Politico that she was thrilled with the study's conclusions, stating, "The system we designed to improve the quality of teaching is actually improving the quality of teaching."