Fast Cities: Denver's Teacher-Incentive Program Gets a Gold Star Fast Cities: Denver's Teacher-Incentive Program Gets a Gold Star
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Fast Cities: Denver's Teacher-Incentive Program Gets a Gold Star

by Nikhil Swaminathan

April 25, 2010
The new issue of Fast Company includes a feature on so-called "fast cities"—cities that employ revolutionary ideas, ones that could serve as templates for the rest of the nation. Austin is praised for its car-sharing initiative; Boulder, Colorado, gets a shout-out for being first to smart grid-implementation; and Denver earns a gold star for ProComp, the teacher-incentive program it implemented back in 2006.

According to the short write-up, Denver residents agreed to a $25 million tax increase—likely agreed upon before the Tea Party formed—to put carrots in front of the city's teachers. And they've responded, earning an average of nearly $7,000, with three-quarters of the classroom leaders working on their own professional development. The result: Test scores in Denver are outpacing those throughout the rest of the state.

If you want to learn more about ProComp, here's a video the Department of Education produced early last year on the program.

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Fast Cities: Denver's Teacher-Incentive Program Gets a Gold Star