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Published: Saturday, 1/11/2014 - Updated: 6 months ago

A third of Perrysburg teachers sign up for performance-based pay

BY MATT THOMPSON
BLADE STAFF WRITER
About a third of Perrysburg teachers signed up for performance-based pay, permitted under the new labor contract which teachers shown here a few months ago were negotiating. About a third of Perrysburg teachers signed up for performance-based pay, permitted under the new labor contract which teachers shown here a few months ago were negotiating.
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Nearly one-third of the Perrysburg teachers have chosen to be paid under the new performance-based pay scale instead of receiving a flat 1.25 percent raise in each of the next two years.

The difference in pay methods, which each teacher could choose, was set up in the new teachers union contract approved in December. Teachers had until Jan. 6 to opt-in to the performance-based pay method and those that did will receive a $1,500 bonus, plus the opportunity, through performance, to earn more than a 1.25 percent pay boost that other teachers will receive.

Out of nearly 300 teachers, 86 chose performance pay.

The performance-based pay approach enables teachers to earn new pay levels and receive a 1.25 percent raise or more. For teachers opting-in, the district will look at personal growth, organizational citizenship, student growth, collaboration, and attendance. That will be graded on a point system from 0-100, with monetary benefits going up to $2,000. If a teacher earns 70 points under the program, he or she will earn a new pay level and $1,400, and the teacher will receive 1.25 percent increase. The performance based pay grade scale will be reset every year and each teacher will have to re-earn higher pay, but the levels can be built on.

Teachers that didn't opt-in continue to move up levels of pay based on years of experience or education obtained. A teacher can earn a few thousand dollars more a year on top of the 1.25 percent increase provided under the new contract.

Aura Norris, executive director of Perrysburg Schools human resources and operations, said she was uncertain how many would sign up for performance-based pay. "We were banking that all of them didn't. But this was about what we thought," she said.

The reason more did not opt-in, Ms. Norris said, might have been the short time they had to consider it. She and Superintendent Tom Hosler met with teachers to explain the pay choices.

Teachers can still opt-in for the performance-based pay for next year, if they do so by May. Those teachers will receive a $1,000 bonus. The bonus money was funded by a Ohio Department of Education grant of $225,000 to implement the system.

When teachers opt-in, it is for the remaining time in the contract. Ms. Norris said that, when the contract is up in 2016, the district might try to tweak the performance-based pay system but won't make it mandatory.

"It is not for everyone," she said. "I had a few high performing teachers tell me, 'I just don't want to have another thing to worry about, and I'm not in it for the money,' and I get that."

Contact Matt Thompson at: mthompson@theblade.com, 419-356-8786, or on Twitter at @mthompson25.



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