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October 17, 2012     The Adams County Record
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October 17, 2012
 

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q-he Adams County Record Wednesday, October 17, 2012 Page 11 Editor's Notebook you vote BY DAI, FISK Last week's article introduced the three resolutions which will come before voters on November 6 and covered Proposition 1. This week we look at Proposition 2. This referendum deals with Pay for Performance for teachers. Again, "proponents" refers to those who advocate a "yes" vote to preserve the Students Come First laws passed last year by the Idaho legislature. "Opponents" refers to those who advocate a "no" vote, repealing the legislation. According to the Idaho Press-Tribune (June 30, 2012): "Idaho has historically sat toward the bottom of education has been pointed out that the staff at Cambridge will see an 8.2% reduction in salary and benefits this year to help fund Pay for Performance. Plus, the state is taking an additional 1.67% from all salaries/benefits and allowing districts to reduce staffing by 9.5% to fund these "bonuses" and the technology components of this law. Proponents are claiming that 85% of Idaho's teachers will earn a bonus, and that each Idaho teacher can earn, on average, an additional $2,000 a year. Some teachers could earn as much as $8,000 in addition to their annual salary. Many think the $8,000 figure is funding and teacher pay, unrealistic hype, but Jason and the recent data showHancock at the State Dept teachers are paid nearly of Education says the $11,000 less than their figures are based on the counterparts nationally, estimated $38.8 million They are also under the fund that will be available average for the Rocky for Pay for Performance Mountain region, which as outline in the new has the lowest educator statutes. He says the pay for all regions of the amounts were calculated country7 with a mathematical Proponents say, under formula using the value the new, current legislation of the state funding our best teachers will be unit and the number of rewarded by receiving students attending Idaho more pay. Many teachers schools. Opponents say say the funds for Pay for there are many of ways to Performance are comingmanipulate these figures. directly from what teachers Opponents say Luna previously received. It is being disingenuous by [ Cattle SaleI I Butcher Cattle Sale [ io:+An II . io:ooAn ~I - ~'" 1001 E. Chicago, CMdwell, Idaho " "t [ ~0~459-7475 Ton Free 1-800-788-44~0 ~O~ Parts and Service Open On Saturday We service all makes and models Quality Service Award Winning Factory Trained Technician Big City Selection All At One Location Phone (208) 549-3310 - Toll Free (800) 658-5080 602 Highway 95 Weiser, Idaho 83672 www.hometownmotors.com on position 2? taking money away from teachers, decreasing staffing and then claiming 85% of teachers will get a pay increase. The Idaho Education Association says, "The funding mechanism is nothing more than a shell game. The complicated bonus pay plan is funded by reducing the amount of money that otherwise would be used to increase all teacher salaries via the traditional salary grid." Senator Sheryl Nuxoll says, "The truth is that the $38 million is extra money added to the education fund from the general fund." Opponents also see Pay for Performance, as outlined in current legislation, as shifting decision making from the local level to state bureaucrats. Other points made by proponents: Teachers can earn bonuses for working in hard-to-fill positions, as determined by the local school board. Positions could include-but are not limited to math, science, special education, or even music. Teachers can earn bonuses for taking on leadership responsibilities as determined by the local school board, such as mentoring new teachers or developing curriculum. Teachers and administrators will also receive bonuses for working in schools that meet student academic growth targets set at both the state and local levels. Even though Pay for Performance is based on a two level formula involving the above- mentioned factors, opponents say a school's evaluation is based almost entirely on ISAT tests - a single test that is given once during the school year. They say this is a rigid one-size-fits-all evaluation that doesn't really show how well a school or teachers are doing. Opponents say teachers working with the most challenging children are likely to get paid less, as students with special needs and from low- income areas typically do not score as well on standardized tests. The new model might work well in a factory that is producing "widgets" but teachers have no control over their raw material. Public schools also have to take students who have been poorly educated by home schooling. Although there are many parents that do a good job of home schooling, the state standards are very lax, resulting in some kids who are far behind if they are put into public schools. Opponents say these factors make the new laws unfair and discourages the best and brightest teachers from working in the schools that need them the most. Proponents say basing Pay for Performance on the entire school's progress w'dJ compensate for the few students who do poorly. Ironically, critics see this as a reason to doubt that only the best teachers would be rewarded. Luna has said if the majority of Idahoans vote "no" on Proposition 2, the money will not be distributed to teachers but will go into the Public Education Stabilization Fund, a savings account for schools. Opponents see this as holding the Pay for Performance funding hostage and a threat not to return all the money that has been taken away from schools. "Base 7JaU.a :-,CALDW]ELL / L 454-9532 BOISE -=: -'::.ii: : ii = - 343-0471 Continued from front page healthy, cow was found dead in the same stream, this time about 30 yards off the road. Law enforcement couldn't find a bullet or bullet hole in either cow, but by the time they were found the cows were not pleasant to be examining. Second hand reports of a couple other cow shootings in the area within the past few weeks could not be confirmed by press time. A follow- up on one report revealed it to be only a rumor. These shootings are reminiscent of several cows that were shot and killed about a year ago north of Council. Local authorities seem to have no leads in these cases. Continued from front page . Sherry Ward requested ing along Wilson Road. that the damage at the The Road Department County Weed Building is installing the culverts be adjusted before she along that road, so it will can solicit bids to rebuild be available for travel the property after the this season. recent fire. The damage Lt. Ryan Zollman was can only be reconstruct- present, representing the ed by contractors with a Sheriff's Department, public works license, and in his report men- Road and Bridge tioned that the new light- Supervisor Tom ing and newly upgraded Glenn presented only camera equipment in the one bid from Hubert jail finishes up the items Construction to pro- noted in the recent jail vide the crushed rock inspection. The jail had for the Indian Valley and seventeen state inmates Council areas. The bid this week. Lt. Zollman ranged from $3.85 at referred all questions Indian Valley to $3.50 at about some disputed bill- Council due to the trans- ings to the Sheriff when portation involved, and he is available. Sheriff the total bid accepted by Rich Green has been the Commissioners was recovering from sur- for $173,272. Engineer gery performed early in Trevor Howard also pre- September, and plans to sented the final invoice be back in the office in covering the rock blast- early November. VALLEY REPAIRS & SERVICES Windshield Repairs & Replacements "We will come to you" Most Comprehensive Insurance pays 100% of Chip Repair Brian & Cyndi Dunham Bauer *Indian Valley~ Idaho (208) 256-4315