Suggested reading: Credible research on education policy issues

On April 27, Gov. Rick Snyder announced wide-ranging changes for public education, including merit pay, teacher experience and seniority-based layoffs, virtual learning, and charter schools. For credible research on these topics, we offer the following:

MEA’s A+ Agenda

Outlines MEA positions on a variety of education reform issues.  Was shared with Gov. Snyder prior to its release in January 2011. 


 Teacher Performance Pay Does Not Increase Student Test Scores

The most rigorous study of merit pay conducted to date in the U.S.— September, 2010

 Merit Pay Found to Have Little Effect on Student Achievement

Education Week’s coverage of above study (in case you need a quick summary).


 Teacher Training, Quality and Student Achievment

More experienced teachers appear more effective in teaching elementary math and reading and middle school math.

Teacher experience correlates with student achievement

This study concludes that a teacher’s experience, test scores and regular licensure all have positive effects on student achievement, with larger effects for math than for reading. 

Why Teaching Experience Matters

Determinants of Educational Attainment and Employment for Students with Disabilities

Teacher experience matters


 The Realities of K-12 Virtual Education

A look at the various policy implications that require attention as virtual education grows.


 Western Michigan University’s Gary Miron is a national expert on charter school effectiveness and is an excellent Michigan source on the subject.  He can be contacted via email at

Stanford CREDO study on charter school performance

The study reveals that a decent fraction of charter schools, 17 percent, provide superior education opportunities for their students. Nearly half of the charter schools nationwide have results that are no different from the local public school options and over a third, 37 percent, deliver learning results that are significantly worse than their student would have realized had they remained in traditional public schools.

These findings underlie the parallel findings of significant state‐by‐state differences in charter school performance and in the national aggregate performance of charter schools. The policy challenge is how to deal constructively with varying levels of performance today and into the future.