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No Educator Left Behind: Recruiting, Retaining Qualified Teachers

No Educator Left Behind is a series providing answers from the U.S. Department of Education to questions about the federal No Child Left Behind Act and how it will affect educators. If you have a question about No Child Left Behind, send an e-mail to Ellen Delisio, and we will submit your question to the Department of Education.


Does the No Child Left Behind Act provide any incentives to recruit and/or retain highly qualified and capable teachers?

U.S. Department of Education:

Incentives to recruit and/or retain highly qualified teachers are allowable expenses under the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act. Under Title II, Part A, of NCLB, both state education agencies (SEAs) and local education agencies (LEAs) can develop and implement strategies and activities to recruit, hire, and retain highly qualified teachers and principals. These strategies may include:

  • Providing monetary incentives, such as scholarships, signing bonuses, or differential pay for teachers in academic subjects or schools in which the LEA has shortages. (Note: Because the purpose of Title II, Part A, is to increase student academic achievement, programs that provide teachers and principals with merit pay, pay differential, and/or monetary bonuses should be linked to measurable increases in student academic achievement produced by the efforts of the teacher or principal. See Section 2101(1) of NCLB.)
  • Reducing class sizes.
  • Recruiting teachers to teach special needs children.
  • Recruiting qualified paraprofessionals and teachers from populations underrepresented in the teaching profession, and providing those paraprofessionals with alternative routes to obtaining teacher certification.
For more information, see Title II, Part A, Sections 2113(c)(12, 14), 2123(a)(1), (4), (5)(D) of NCLB.

Read previous questions and answers in our No Educator Left Behind archive.