A hubbub is brewing over money in the newly approved state budget for teacher pay bonuses, and who will get them. Louisiana Federation of Teachers president Steve Monaghan says word has come down from the House Democratic Caucus that the Department of Education is telling districts that those bonuses must be tied to the new evaluation program for teachers--which is currently being "tweaked" to correct flaws.
However, Superintendent of Education John White says DOE has made no such statements of conditions for the teacher bonuses. He says the law makes it pretty clear that at least half the money is to be given to teachers. The one-time bonuses will range from a few hundred to maybe a thousand dollars per teacher. The funds come from $69-million in the budget; half of which is to be paid to public school teachers in one-time bonuses. White says no directive to tie that cash to the troubled new evaluation program has been made. He says it's up to the districts to pay their teachers, not the DOE.