Dear Christian Science Monitor,
How nice of you to send me a teaser magazine suggesting I subscribe to your publication. The contents of that teaser were exceptionally instructive, particularly when you explained how money doesn't matter to school success.
As you see it in your center-right, two-sides-to-every-issue faux contrarianism, some schools are making it work without a penny extra. Apparently they do this through merit pay. Since my understanding is that merit pay would, in fact, lead to higher salaries, I must assume money is being cut elsewhere - either through destroying retirement funds or cutting student programs, I suppose.
Despite there being not one datum that supports merit pay in any way, I have to tell you you're missing the obvious:
Money Does Too Matter.
Money matters for my students, who annually get more crowded classrooms with fewer resources. It matters to their families, many of whom live in poverty with all of its deleterious effects on school success (bad health, trauma, poor nutrition, food insecurity, housing insecurity...). It matters to me, because I am on track to spend more than my "Hard to Staff" bonus on the school supplies California won't buy this year.
It matters to the many, many upper-middle class parents - some of whom undoubtedly work for the Monitor - as they willingly pay five and six and seven times more than California's per-pupil allocation in search of well-funded, low-poverty private schools.
And it definitely matters to you, editors of the Christian Science Monitor. What underlies all this "school success has nothing to do with cash" nonsense is selfishness. "Public schools take too much of our hard-earned tax dollars," you huff and puff. "We need that money for other things, like tax breaks for the wealthy. After all, private school tuition is higher than ever!"
Your teaser made it abundantly clear that your publication is not to my tastes, and I'm not the kind of reader you want. In the future, to save on paper and postage, I recommend that you cross-check your purchased mailing lists with public teacher credential databases.
All the Best,