AUSTIN, Texas - About 120 Harmony Public School teachers in the Central Texas region were rewarded for their outstanding performances last month thanks to the Texas Educations Agency’s Teacher Incentive Allotment (TIA).
"They look at various forms of data. The biggest one is correlation between observations in the classrooms and student outcomes," said Amy Jenkin, assistant area superintendent of programs for central Texas.
In 2019, the Texas legislature created the teacher incentive allotment program as part of the state's new education bill, HB 3. The bill provides new funds for across the board pay raises for Texas teachers.
TIA recognizes teachers at different levels: recognized, exemplary, and master.
"There's the exemplar and there's the master. The recognized level averages about $3,500 in bonus ability all the way up to the master's ability, which is about $26,000. And all of those teachers are receiving those awards in May, and then they get their payout in August," said Jenkin.
MORE EDUCATION STORIES:
- Bastrop ISD announces app for parents to track their child's bus
- Round Rock ISD now offers program to further education in health science
- Austin ISD school board prepares for new law requiring an armed officer on each campus
TIA was created by the Texas legislature as part of HB 3 to provide a realistic pathway for top teachers to earn six-figure salaries.
"We've actually had our eligibility for five years. We're in a data capturing year. This year we will resubmit," said Jenkin.
Across the state, schools are seeing many teacher vacancies with this allotment, TEA hopes it will retain teachers to stay working for hard to staff schools.
"TEA, validates teachers and reminds them that the career that they have chosen is respectable, and it is honorable. And it reminds them that all the hard work that they put in is acknowledged through the state and also through our organization," said Jenkin.
Teachers such as Chaerli Faught say this reward will go a long way for their students.
"A lot of our classroom materials I personally buy. So, I use a lot of I'm going to be using a lot of that money for like supplies, extra notebooks in case we need it," said fourth grade teacher Chaerli Faught.