Electronic Theses and Dissertations





Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Leadership and Policy Studies


Educational Leadership

Committee Chair

Reginald L Green

Committee Member

Larry McNeal


There have been many programs and initiatives used throughout the United States that have answered the call of educational reform; however, performance pay programs continues to lead the discussion of incentives to improve academic achievement. Nevertheless, there continues to be a lack of clarity regarding its effectiveness. In addition, to addressing the challenge of improving academic achievement, performance pay is also being recognized as a tool to assist with teacher retention which has become a serious issue for many school districts across the nation. While many teachers are retiring, many others are taking the option of leaving the profession due to low moral, low compensation, and/or unfavorable working conditions. Many Americans are aware of the importance of having quality teachers in the classroom in order for students to excel. However, even more are beginning to acknowledge the necessity for increasing teachers' salaries as a means of retaining the best and the brightest. The purpose of this study is to determine school principals' perceptions of teacher performance pay programs, specifically in Tennessee. This study also addresses the issues of gaining and retaining quality educators through the implementation of performance pay programs and investigate the principals' perception of pay for performance as motivating factors for teachers and principals to help increase student achievement. Since performance pay has been such a polarizing topic in the education field, this study also examines principals' perceptions of performance pay programs as fair and equitable and whether performance pay improves the instructional effectiveness of teachers. Through this study, the researcher gained greater insight into the thoughts, and opinions of principals in Tennessee regarding the impact of teacher performance pay. While the analysis from Tennessee principals' perceptions from this study did not vary much from other studies, it does suggest that if a performance pay program is to be successful in the state of Tennessee it must be open to all schools in a school district, transparent, and substantial to motivate action. But most importantly, it cannot be a standalone program. There must be other initiatives that will aid in student achievement.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.