Wealthy School District Teachers Receive Higher Bonuses

IndyStar recently published an article pointing out the disparity in teacher performance pay in wealthy school districts vs. low income school districts in Indiana. According to data from the Indiana Department of Education, most teachers (those rated highly effective or effective) at Carmel Clay Schools and Zionsville Community Schools will receive over $2,200 in performance money. However, Indianapolis Public Schools teachers with the same ratings will receive only $128 per teacher; likewise teachers in Wayne Township Schools will see the lowest payments at $42 per teacher.

 “What it does do is channel even more money to those school corporations that already get the largest slices of the financial pie,” – House Democratic leader Scott Pelath, a Michigan City Democrat whose local school district received none of the funding

“What it does do is channel even more money to those school corporations that already get the largest slices of the financial pie,” – House Democratic leader Scott Pelath, a Michigan City Democrat whose local school district received none of the funding

Though supporters of the money say it’s intended to reward good teachers, House Speaker Brian Bosma and Superintendent-elect Jennifer McCormick both say they think lawmakers should review the performance-based pay. According to Teresa Meredith, president of the Indiana State Teachers Association, this payment rewards schools with access to better resources and supports, while poorer schools get less – or nothing.

Elevate Teachers founder Richard Garrett thinks the disparity in payments is outrageous, because teachers at wealthier schools don’t have the same challenges as those at low-income schools. “This system of allocation must be changed!  The morale of the low income teachers is already low and this is a terrible slap in the face to them all,” Garrett said.

What do you think about Indiana’s teacher performance pay? Leave your comments below. 

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