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Governor Ron DeSantis Reenvisions Florida’s Teacher Bonus Program, Title I Schools Have the Most to Gain

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Could a new bonus program replace Best and Brightest? Photo: Flickr Creative Commons

Governor Ron DeSantis and Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran announced the new program would offer thousands of dollars in bonuses to teachers and principals at schools that show improvement under the state’s grading system. 

Teachers and principals at schools that improve between one and six percentage points under the state’s grading system would be eligible for the bonuses ranging from $1,000 to $10,000 dollars.

DeSantis says teachers and principals at high-performing Title I schools, where most students receive free or reduced-cost lunches, would earn additional awards on top of that.

“We are trying to incentivize teachers and principals to be willing to go to and remain at Title I schools which are some of the schools that are in more low income areas but that have some of the greatest need.”

The Florida Education Association says the proposal does not go far enough and describes the program as a cheap and short-term solution to the state’s teacher shortage. 

President Fedrick Ingram says he’d rather see salary raises across the board.

“One of the main reasons that we continue to lose teachers in Florida is because teachers can’t afford to live on one paycheck or one job simply because lawmakers have not done right by teacher compensation.”

Last month DeSantis proposed raising the minimum pay for teachers to $47,500 dollars. 

If you’d like to listen to the story, please click on the clips above.

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Danielle Prieur

About Danielle Prieur

Reporter & Fill-in Host

Danielle Prieur is a general assignment reporter at WMFE. You can hear her reporting on a daily basis on the station. She also fills-in as a host during the morning and afternoon drive times. Her reporting has been featured on NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and Vox. Danielle is originally from Rochester Hills, ... Read Full Bio »