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Saturday, September 10, 2022

DeSantis's failed teacher pay scheme

 As election season ramps up, so do the lies and half-truths, and as a teacher, the one that infuriates me the most is DeSantis claiming he raised teacher salaries. The truth is he did raise salaries for beginning teachers, people who had never been in a classroom, but he did so by cutting the salaries of veteran teachers, people who had dedicated their lives to the state's children.

To raise beginning salaries, the state took money from two programs, Best and Brightest, and school recognition funds, two admittedly flawed programs that mostly benefitted teachers in affluent schools but did put money in veteran teachers’ pockets. The effect was tens of thousands of veteran teachers took pay cuts. So while DeSantis was saying look at me, look what I did, veteran teachers were looking at their bank accounts shrink.

Then think about the plan that DeSantis was so proud of. He made it so that a teacher who just started and a teacher who spent over a decade in our schools was paid basically the same. He did not just shrug his shoulders at this disrespect, but he reveled in it. He could have made it, so every teacher got roughly a 2,700-dollar raise, but no, he decided hurting people who had dedicated their lives to the children of Florida was the way to go, and now we are reaping what has sown with none thousand teacher vacancies a problem he promised would go away with his teacher pay scheme.

DeSantis has been a failed education leader for many reasons, but one of the biggest and most unnecessary was his teacher pay scheme that robbed Peter, veteran teachers, to pay Paul, people who had never even stepped foot in a classroom. 


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