Argument: Merit pay discourages teaching disadvantaged students
"Top Ten Reasons Why Merit Pay for Teachers Is a Terrible Idea". Education Portal. July 10th, 2007: "4. Some Teachers are Punished ... Should a teacher who chooses to teach at a large school, an inner city school, or a special needs school where tests scores are generally lower be punished? Definitely not, but that is exactly what some merit pay programs threaten to do."
"No merit to merit pay". United Teachers Los Angeles. November 9, 2007: "Merit pay would also hurt the very students with whom the authors of the legislation seem to be concerned. Within schools, teachers might want to teach those students whose skill levels would translate into higher test scores. Skilled, veteran teachers might be less likely to work with students with limited English proficiency or special needs children for fear their students would not test well.
In fact, merit pay would create a disincentive for the very teachers we want going into the most challenging schools and communities. Such teachers might want to move to the most affluent schools because the monetary rewards would be greater. This could have a devastating impact in our poorest communities."