I am one member of a five person board. The opinions I express on this forum are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Escambia County Staff, Administrators, Employees, or anyone else associated with Escambia County Florida. I am interested in establishing this blog as a means of additional transparency to the public, outreach to the community, and information dissemination to all who choose to look. Feedback is welcome, but because public participation is equally encouraged, appropriate language and decorum is mandatory.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Huge loss In Teacher Bonuses is a Part of the Untold Story

At least $958,093.00 will not be coming to 22 Escambia County Schools for School Recognition Bonuses this year.   This is a continuing part of the fallout from the new, lowered FCAT grades our district received this year.   
The huge loss in performance bonus money is not being discussed at meetings of the board, and is also being overlooked by the media, for unknown reasons. 
But a $Million dollars is a lot of money that would have been distributed later this year, around Christmas time.  Most likely a good portion of this bonus money would have been re-spent in the community--meaning the benefits would have branched out beyond just the employees.  
Looking at a list of Escambia County Schools and the amount of cash bonus money each of these 22 schools received last year—that total was $958,093.00.  This list can be found on page 14 of

Compare this list to the recent list of schools (below) whose letter grades have dropped, and the 22 schools not maintaining their A letter grade or improving a letter grade become apparent.

Bailey Middle School has been an “A” school for nearly a decade running—and last year Bailey received over $100,000 for staff bonuses.  This year, nothing.  Ransom Middle School—another perennial “A” School, received $92,000 last year, but this year will get $0 for teacher bonuses.
This is a devastating blow to the hard working staffs of these schools; hopefully they can all bounce back next year and reclaim the lottery funded recognition money to fund more teacher bonuses!
The only bright spot—several schools did manage to maintain their “A” letter grades through this tough testing year, meaning they will still get their bonuses this year again.  Kudos to these schools! (Hellen Caro, N.B. Cook, Cordova Park, Pine Meadow, Suter, Brown Barge Middle School, R.C. Lipscomb, Blue Angels, Byrneville, and Pensacola Beach) 
For more information on the lottery funded school recognition awards program, look here.

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