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Associated Press

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — North Carolina legislators aiming to improve education are looking at whether to pay students for coming to class and earning good grades.

A leading Republican senator has proposed offering cash to each of the state’s 1.4 million public school students who meet certain goals. Sen. Fletcher Hartsell of Cabarrus County says cash incentives might motivate students to work harder or get uninvolved parents to do more to help their children learn.

He wants a two-year study looking at the pros and cons.

A statewide student rewards program be far more extensive than the experimenting that’s been going on for years in cities like Baltimore, New York and Chicago. Researchers say offering rewards can work, but don’t always improve results.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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16 Comments on "NC considering paying students for good grades"

2015 years 10 months ago

Legislators want to pay students to do what they should already be doing but then cut teachers and administrators and double class sizes?? I would like to see the legislators try to teach in a public school for a week, they would never last. Teachers have not received a raise in years and more cuts are being discussed? They should start funding schools for school supplies, books, technology and a million other things that could help these students. Then if there is so much money left over and they need to give it away, how about rewarding the teachers that are busting their ass to teach this generation and make a difference and motivate students instead of bribing them.

2015 years 10 months ago

It’s unfortunate that we now look to pay children for doing what they are supposed to do. This government guarantees the right to a free, public education. Public education currently provides breakfast and lunch, free medical assistance (school nurse), psychological services, social services, school supplies, and if time permits, education. Now we want to PAY the students? How about fining the parents who don’t provide for the safety, welfare, and moral character of the children they send to school,if it doesn’t interfere with a vacation, for us to “fix”.

2015 years 10 months ago

If students received payments a lot of problems would become resolved. Kids often spend money really fast, this would very much help our economy grow. When the economy becomes bad people hold onto money, when they hold on to money it becomes worse. If children were contributing to the economy, it would never slow down. Plus children could save the money for their college education or help their families. Coming from a poor family myself I rarely got any money. If kids were given cash incentives it would solve: The economy slowing down, college loan debts and poverty. This is a great idea!

2015 years 10 months ago

Zach, you have got to be kidding me! How does teaching kids that the way to get ahead in life is to sponge off other peoples’ money? I am trying to send my own child to college and THANKS TO HAVING TO PAY FOR EVERYONE ELSES’ KIDS, I don’t even know if I will be able to do so. If I can’t, I will TELL MY CHILD SHE WILL HAVE TO GET A JOB AND HELP PAY HER OWN WAY!!!!!!!!!

I also grew up dirt poor, but I never felt like society owed me anything. We were taught hard work is what would get us ahead. We are raising kids to look at everyone around us and COVET what others have. We won’t go and rob a bank to get other peoples’ money, but some sure will elect politicians who will rob others blind (thru forced taxes) to take as much of their hard EARNED money as they can possible get their hands on. God help us!!

2015 years 10 months ago

Where will this be funded from? This state currently can’t even return overpaid tax money yet you want to pay students for grades? Last time I checked the government wasn’t a parent and it isn’t their responsibility to give rewards.

Yes, I know if students get better grades that may lower the chance they are a burden on society by them becoming working individuals instead of welfare sponges. How about a time limit on receiving welfare? Say a person gets to receive benefits for up to a total of 5 years and then is cut off? If you have not figured out how to manage your life by then, you never will.

What about the children, you cry? Make it part of accepting welfare mandates birth control to prevent future sponges. In five years a person can earn at least an associates degree or a bachelor’s degree, get in the work force and start to be a productive member of this society.

But not everybody wants to go to school. Ok, while you are receiving my tax money, you have to work in the neighborhood you reside. Out doing landscaping, learning how to repair heat/AC systems, learning how to install & repair plumbing, painting or carpet installiation. Then maybe the public housing areas will not be such a blight. If you see somebody spray painting on a wall you just painted and will now have to repaint due to their “art”, you might step up and do something about it. If you have to go snake the same persons drain for the 4th time in a week, you might ask what are they dumping in there. Then when your time on welfare is up, you have acquired job skills that will allow you to work anywhere in the country for more than minimum wage.

2015 years 10 months ago

Freakonomics already had a study on this and showed that it really didn’t make a huge difference. The state doesn’t have enough money to pay for good teachers, how are they going to afford this? We need to invest in education but this isn’t the way.

2015 years 10 months ago

I am a teacher and this is beyond insulting! This same group of elected officials just voted to cut our pay and benefits. Now they have money to pay kids for doing what they are supposed to do any way? Have they considered the different standards they will have to set for different learners? The EC kids have to have a chance at their money too. What about the parents who are going to become nightmares once there is money on the line? I’m not talking about those who hold teachers to a higher standard. I hold myself to a very high standard already. I’m talking about those who will try to intimidate teachers into giving grades not earned or will retaliate against teachers with frivolous complaints to principals, superintendents,and school board members. It will be a nightmare all around. Just the thought of all the brand new ipods and DS-i’s I’ll have to confiscate in my classroom is enough to give me a headache. If this becomes reality, it may be the straw that breaks the camel’s back and drives me away from the profession.

2015 years 10 months ago

the law needs to stipulate that the parents of any student paid will be billed twice the amount paid to the student.

This is ridiculous.

As a youth, we never had such a ridiculous proposal. Let your grades drop and you got a walk to the woodshed and sports team removal.

On another note, with the state budget in such a shambles, where do they anticipate the funds will come from? Teachers are already sqwealing over the proposal to hit them for health care premiums.

Where are the teacher voices now on this one?

2015 years 10 months ago

What do you think is easier: the parent emailing or calling each of his child’s four teachers, or a teacher emailing and calling 80 or more parents? What is more logical? Maybe its that pathetic lack of initiative by the parents that has been passed down to their children and is reflected in their work ethic at school. Surely it should be someone else’s responsibility to inform parents about their own child, right? I mean, why, as a parent, should one take the initiative to look into your child’s education when you can wait for them to fail and then blame someone else. I mean in our age of technology, just think about howl long it takes to e-mail four teachers saying “How is my child John Doe doing in your class?” Nevermind, you are right. That sentence was exhausting to write. I am going to go replenish myself with a nap and a Gatorade.

Keith George
2015 years 10 months ago

Is this really what our education system has come to? Why should taxpayers foot the bill to motivate kids to make good grades? It is the responsibility of the parents with support from the school systems to accomplish this task. If anything they should do a study to see how they can improve the notification system to parents of students that are not doing well. Teachers should be notifying parents when students fail to do the assigned work so that parents can keep abreast of what their student(s)is/are doing.

2015 years 10 months ago

As a teacher of 80 students, I can tell you that I hardly have time to do all of my assigned duties, much less have to notify parents every time their child doesn’t turn in their homework. I wish I could! I have to rely on parents to read progress reports and check in with me once in a while.

2015 years 10 months ago

And while you’re at it, throw in a Wii game console, a few free games and a new Cadillac Escalade! A fine way to spend more money on kids that have no idea what money is in the first place!

2015 years 10 months ago

What baffles me is how do we elect people that introduce these preposterous ideas?

2015 years 10 months ago

This is the most ridiculous idea I have heard in a long time. Senator Hartsell needs to have his head examined. Sounds like another one that needs to be voted out of office soon.

2015 years 10 months ago

How about making the parents pay a penalty for bad grades? It’s not coincidence that private schools have significantly higher grades than their public school counterparts. When parents sacrifice their hard-earned money for their kids’ education, they’re more involved and have a motivation to make sure their kids apply themselves or to get them help if they have learning disability. Paying people for doing what they should be doing already is teaching them the wrong lesson.

F.G.Carter, Jr.
2015 years 10 months ago

If the promise of a lifetime of increased income and increased opportunies both in the workplace and in terms of self-actualization do not motivate a student, then do we really think a few dollars at the end of the year are going to do the trick? Why not teach our children the benefits of delayed gratification and rewards for a job well-done rather than the values of quick cash for memorizing facts. This is not a game show. This is real world responsibility for the education of generations to come.


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