Indiana lawmakers close to finalizing teacher pay plan

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INDIANAPOLIS (Network Indiana): A teacher pay plan is in final negotiations at the statehouse.

Both the House and Senate have voted to encourage schools to earmark 85% of their budgets for the classroom, but the Senate added a requirement for schools to submit a plan for reaching that goal if they don’t get there within three years. Granger Representative Dale DeVon, who authored the original bill, says that’s too long to wait to address what legislators agree should be a priority.

Negotiators are also discussing whether 85% is the right number, or if it needs to move up or down.

House and Senate Republicans are in agreement about not ordering local schools to spend their money a certain way. DeVon says some schools spend as little as 60% of their money in the classroom and have good reasons why that’s all they can do. He says the goal is to make local administrators think about their priorities.

DeVon says schools spend an average of 80% of their budgets in the classroom. He says every percent they can add to that will put an extra $70-million in teachers’ pockets.


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