At the Eastern Kentucky University Board of Regents meeting Tuesday, John Williamson, the superintendent and dean of K-12 programming, discussed the new performance-based pay program to be implemented at the Model Laboratory School.

“We are really excited to get started with the performance based pay for teachers,” he told the board.

Model, the state’s only remaining laboratory school, will introduce the new system in 2021 and according to Williamson, it will be an incentive for teachers to come to the school and help make Model a “center of innovation.”

“We are incentivising teachers to develop a plan with a new pedagogie or program that would go beyond the four walls of their classroom that would help change education in the commonwealth,” Williamson said. “And if they would be willing to undertake that we would be willing to compensate them for the year that they are undergoing that research.”

According to Williamson, the school will offer “compensating and competitive pay,” offering the same salary as Fayette County, the highest paying school system in the region.

He said that the program is not automatic and for teachers that would agree to participate, they are undertaking a larger effort to approve efforts in education in a broader context in doing so.

So far, Williamson says that he has received good feedback from the faculty, especially with less experienced teachers.

“We have gotten a good reception especially from less experienced teachers who are just starting out in the profession with the initiative,” he said. “That’s what we want, to start them off and influence their instructional practice for the rest of their career.”

Williamson, who just recently took his position, told the board that when he was hired he was focused on three initiatives to help make the laboratory school the “model” for K-12 education.

In his position he hopes to revitalize the school as a learning lab and center for innovation, become the center for K-12 education and strategically focus the school’s dual enrollment offerings and initiatives.

He updated the board at their regular meeting of the school’s 5% increase in enrollment, noting that since students pay tuition to attend the lab school, it was impressive.

However with that increase, he told the board that the current facilities the school operates in are currently too small for meaningful growth and that it is outdated for current operations.

“In order to grow and scale our work, our facilities just don’t work,” he said. “They are out of date, the infrastructure don’t work. When he have heating or cooling it is in the opposite season of when you would need it.”

He went on to thank the facilities department at the university for helping update and maintain the existing structure to better serve both the students and faculty.

Reach Taylor Six at 624-663 or follow her on Twitter at @TaylorSixRR.

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