Teacher Pay Incentive Plan

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Governor Perry's new plans for an incentive pay program for teachers is getting mixed reactions from educators.

The incentive pay program would reward teachers who improve student performance in economically disadvantage schools. Those schools could be eligible for a $100,000 grant with at least 75 percent going directly to the teachers who had the greatest impact on improved test scores.

But many educators say that could be tough to decipher.

" Instead of building teams on campus for student achievement, what it does is create rivalries I think," said Bobby Slovak, president of the local chapter of the Texas State Teachers Association. Slovak thinks the plan doesn't address the problems in Texas public schools.

" I think all campuses need to get extra money to provide programs to under achieving students on those campuses," said Slovak.

Dr Francis Mc Arthur with Bryan ISD hopes the plan will help Bryan schools. But right now the plan does not outline what classifies a school as economically disadvantaged. There are 4 campuses in Bryan with 90 percent of students on free or reduced lunch and those schools may end up qualifying.

" We want to reward all of our teachers absolutely and all of our teachers work hard. But there is a no question that we need to attract our best and brightest teachers to the schools where the highest number of children of poverty and children with high needs are," said McArthur.

Many educators are waiting for more specifics of the incentive pay program, but most can agree on one thing.

" The biggest impact on student performance is the teacher," said McArthur.

Governor Perry's program also calls for funds to reimburse teachers for supplies and expanded advancement programs.