Texas Teachers Upset About Bill That Would Change Compensation - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

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Texas Teachers Upset About Bill That Would Change Compensation

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    Thousands of teachers have expressed opposition to a piece of legislation in the Texas House that would change the way raises are structured. (Published Wednesday, April 15, 2015)

    Thousands of teachers have expressed opposition to a piece of legislation in the Texas House that would change the way raises are structured.

    The proposal has already passed the state Senate and is now in front of a House committee as H.B. 2543.

    It changes teachers' compensation from a step system of raises, which are determined by number of years of service.

    State Rep. Marsha Farney, R-Georgetown, is the bill's sponsor and said there is a lot of misinformation about the bill. Farney said it was meant to empower teachers.

    Farney said the bill would give teachers more opportunity to show what they have done and be involved in the process.

    “There is going to be a commission formed of teachers, administrators and parents who will make recommendations of what those growth measures will be,” said Farney.

    But teachers are concerned about the bill, which says part of the raises will be based on academic performance of the students. More than 30,000 people are supporting a petition to kill the legislation.

    “It talks about measuring teachers based on students’ performance. You are talking about such an uneven playing field,” said teacher Beth Sullivan.

    Sullivan is concerned that student growth will be measured by how their students do on tests, as are other teachers who think that will determine their raises.

    “The STAAR test might be included. My understanding, based on what I think we are working on, that is optional for a school district to choose,” Farney said.

    The bill is still going through some changes in their office. Sullivan wants more information, and points out the bill is vague.

    “What I would really like to see is specifics,” said Sullivan.

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