Image 1 of 1
Oceano, California, November 1, 2011 - Teacher Marcia Bess works with her 2nd grade class at Oceano Elementary School. As a part of an effort to help bridge some of the contrasts in school performance here, the 10,800-student school district of Lucia Mar recently became the first in California to adopt, in four of its schools, the Teacher Advancement Program (TAP) school-reform initiative. The complex model couples professional development, teacher observations keyed to a set of teaching standards and  leadership opportunities for teachers. Bess says she was origianlly leary of the TAP program, but now says she loves it. Adding, "We were nervous with the talk about merit pay, but now I really don't care. I am having fun teaching again. There are so many fresh ideas that are getting students motivated. I just love it."