Tuesday, March 1, 2011

House Out of Commission; Senate Plods Ahead to Address Education


While the Indiana House continues to sit idle, the Indiana Senate continues to move forward with its Republican-led agenda.

In the Senate, the education reform bill, Senate Bill 1, contains much of Governor Daniels' and Tony Bennett's reforms on teacher evaluation.

One provision changes the way salaries are collectively bargained. If this bill were to pass, only 33 percent of teacher salary increment increases would be based on experience. This is unlike the essentially 100 percent based on experience today.

Teachers argue that this could result in lowering of teacher pay. Bennett has none of that and has released a few pointed news releases saying that he will not support anything that lowers teacher salaries. So, who's telling the truth?

Essentially, here's what will happen...as I see it under a world where Senate Bill 1 passes.

Let's say I make $50,000 a year with a Bachelor's Degree and 15 years of experience. next year, I'm scheduled to make $52,500 a year with a Bachelor's Degree and 16 years of experience. That's how raises are essentially handed out now. That changes under SB1. Under its provisions, that $2,500 raise must be decided based on four different categories.

Thirty-three percent can come from my experience jump. That's $825. The rest of the raise comes from the other three categories: an annual evaluation (placing me into the nice, neat categories of highly effective, effective, improvement necessary, or ineffective), the assignment of instructional leadership roles, and the academic needs of a school system (as Bennett explained, a district can now target bigger raises to physics teachers if physics teachers are hard to recruit to a specific district).

Those other three categories and how the raises are divied up are open for collective bargaining. Essentially, any raise would now come from 66 percent of other things than my experience or degrees. What's that sound like to you? Now my $52,500 job for next year is just, at least, $50,825.

Again, I'm no math whiz.

Bennett's right. This is not a basic pay cut, but it's easy to argue it the other way. The increment raises that used to come with experience are now going to likely come with a little bit more on the line. This is a game changer for teachers across Indiana.

If I'm wrong on this, please correct me.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

This creates a cast system among teachers. I am more valuable than you are because I teach Physics and you only teach reading. I am more valuable than either one of you because I teach Special Education. This means we can devalue English teachers, reading teachers, social studies teachers and elementary teachers. RUBBISH!!

Anonymous said...

This creates a cast system among teachers. I am more valuable than you are because I teach Physics and you only teach reading. I am more valuable than either one of you because I teach Special Education. This means we can devalue English teachers, reading teachers, social studies teachers and elementary teachers. RUBBISH!!

Erin said...

Jon- how do you view the three criteria? I know you have said you already have annual reviews (though with different criteria for evaluation). Are the three other parts locked in at certain percentages or is there overlap (i.e. if you are not given an instructional leadership role are you not eligible for a certain % of the remaining 67% increase or if you are evaluated as 'highly effective', can you still get the full % raise)? thanks for the info, btw. Very helpful.

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh... it seems the time has come that we welcome educators to the real work-a-day world?

Could it be that those some teachers should have done a better job of explaining labor unions to their students... maybe fewer teachers should have voted for those big "R" now in power!

Anonymous said...

Wow the idea of performance management is long overdue that it isn’t funny. People in the private sector have gone through this for years. Teachers unions need to stop protecting the bad at the expense of the good. I can wait for these government reforms. It’s time to end the “I’m in the union you can’t touch me.” It’s time to end the unions in public education altogether.