SCUC ISD Teacher Incentive Allotment Plan
In the 86th Legislative Session, HB 3 provided funds for districts in Texas to apply for funding through The Teacher Incentive Allotment (TIA). The allotment provides funding to pay highly effective teachers whose students show measurable improvement in academic growth. The increased compensation for our most effective teachers will help attract and retain highly effective teachers at traditionally hard-to-staff schools.
The Texas Education Agency has developed criteria for the components of the TIA. This is a rigorous process for districts to gain approval for TIA funding. Teacher evaluations, observations, and student outcomes must align. Our design is to have an equitable opportunity for ALL teachers, create a culture of excellence, improve student achievement, and be transparent. This process must be valid and applied consistently across all evaluations. For these reasons, the District is building a plan that involves rigorous training and calibration of the teacher evaluation process. We will continue to use T-TESS, and re-evaluate the training and calibration of the evaluation process.
The exact amount of increased compensation available to each teacher is dependent on a formula determined at the state level, which also takes into account the number of students who are economically disadvantaged. You can learn more at tiatexas.org
TIA is a performance pay teacher evaluation system that may award additional compensation to teachers based on predetermined effectiveness criteria. This means that the most effective teachers in the district have an opportunity to earn additional compensation from the state of Texas.
Based on TIA requirements, the evaluation criteria must include both a teacher observation and a student performance component. While we will create our own process for assessing observations and student performance, the state has established a set of guidelines for measuring exceptional effectiveness that we must adhere to.
The district committee, made up of teachers in all content areas and grade levels, as well as a few district staff, are considering which student performance components we will use. The Teacher observation will be based on T-TESS.
While it is not required, we may decide to use other measures in determining the teachers’ effectiveness as well, such as student surveys or teacher leadership.
The idea of using multiple criteria to measure teacher effectiveness, e.g. observations and student growth, is referred to as the use of multiple measures. For every TIA eligible teacher we will track progress against these measures over the course of the school year. Detailed TIA Texas Designation System Requirements are available on tiatexas.org.
- Teachers will receive regular development, feedback and progress updates to keep them abreast of their TIA status.
- Over the course of the school year TIA eligible teachers will receive multiple T-TESS observations and follow standardized student assessment protocol.
- When a full year of data, e.g. T-TESS observations and student growth scores, has been collected, that information will be used to calculate a composite score for each eligible teacher. Based on the composite score each teacher will be assigned a designation.
- Teachers may receive performance-based incentives based on their designation. The designation details and funding allocation have yet to be determined. Teachers will be engaged exploring implementation options for both. Refer to this tool from TIA Texas to determine how much each SCUC ISD campus is eligible to receive. Note that the final amount actually allocated to each campus depends on a number of variables.
According to TEA, TIA is designed to differentiate compensation is designed to direct additional pay to teachers who qualify for the three tiers:
- Master – Top 5% of the state
- Exemplary – Top 20% of the state
- Recognized / National Board Certification – Top 1/3 of the state
TIA Timeline and Process
The work we are undertaking to secure TIA funding for the district is a multi-year process. TIA Texas established a rolling application process, whereby districts can apply in one of many cohorts. Schertz-Cibolo-Universal ISD is applying in Cohort E. The high-level timeline and for our application and designations is noted below:
Data-Capture Year: 2022-2023
System Application Posted: Nov. 1, 2021
System Application due to TEA (no fee required for submission): April 15, 2022
System Application Result Final Notification: August 15, 2022
Data Review due to Texas Tech University (data processing fee required for each teacher put forth for designation): November 1, 2023
Final Approval Notification: Late February 2024
Final Designation and Allotment Notification: April 2024
Initial Payout with Reimbursements for Approved Systems: September 2024 or September 2025* (*if the district chooses to hold designations)
SCUC ISD has pulled together a committee of teachers and administrators to help oversee the development of our local program. That team has meetings planned each month starting in October. Along the way, campus surveys for feedback will be sent out, and campuses will be provided information about the processes and ideas shared by the committee. The application will be submitted in April 2022, so reports to the Board of Trustees as well as internal groups such as the District Improvement Committee and campus faculty will be on going through April.
As a school district, we want to reward highly effective teachers who get results. It is essential that we ensure our students are learning from great teachers who are doing amazing things and experiencing better than average growth. We believe it is important to provide the opportunity for highly effective teachers to earn more without having to leave the classroom.
Our goal in 3-5 years is for all teachers to have the opportunity to participate in the Teacher Incentive Allotment. In our initial application, we may include all teachers/content areas; however, the district committee will determine if this is possible, or if we may need to target specific groups of teachers first, before including all content areas and grade levels. If we are approved with a portion of the faculty initially, we will have the opportunity to apply to expand the grade levels and/or content areas in the following years.
The goal of TIA is to reward excellent teachers who show evidence that students who are enrolled in their classroom grow academically. In order to do that, SCUC ISD must use a system that accurately measures growth and performance. Many measures will be reviewed before a determination is made. Some grade levels or content areas may use standarized measurement tools such as NWEA MAP; however, for those content areas that do not have MAP or another standardized assessment, measures such as pre/post tests or Student Learning Objectives may be considered. The measurement tools will be determined by the district committee with input from teachers around the district.
During the 2022-2023 school year, data will be collected for an overall rating. The three data components used for the overall rating are: T-TESS Observation Ratings, Student Growth, and Campus Growth. Once the data is compiled and submitted, teachers will be ranked in comparison to other teachers in the state. Teachers who fall into at least the top 1/3 in the state will be given a designation and funds will be awarded during the 2023-2024 school year.
TEA designates that at least 90% of the funds received will be spent on teacher compensation on the campuses where the designated teacher works. Each campus is designated as Tier 1,2,3,4, or 5 according to the percentage of economically disadvantaged students enrolled. Most SCUC ISD schools fall in the Tier 1 or 2 categories due to our student economic status. The funds available for designations are:
- Master Level $12,000 - $32,000
- Exemplary Level $9,000 - $18,000
- Recognized Level $3,000 - $9,000.
To see where each SCUC ISD school is designated, see the information provided by the state here: https://public.tableau.com/app/profile/fazil/viz/shared/TFMMBC94B
LEAs must verify that each teacher meets the following eligibility requirements before submitting them for a designation:
- The teacher must have a valid SBEC certificate. Eligible types of certificates include Standard, Professional, Provisional. Eligible classes of certificates include Classroom Teacher (Chapter 233), Reading Specialist (Chapter 239), Legacy Master Teacher http://ritter.tea.state.tx.us/sbecrules/tac/index.html
- The teacher must be coded as 087 (Teacher) per the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) description of codes for 90 days at 100% of the day (equivalent to four and one-half months or a full semester) or 180 days required at 50-99% of the day and compensated for that employment
The state does not set a limit on the number of teachers that can receive TIA. However, TEA provided guidance on the percentage of teachers who should be assigned each designation.
How can TIA be “equitable and fair” across the board when TEA has provided “recommendations” for how
TEA provided guidance on the percentage of teachers who should be assigned each designation. The goal of the guidance is to ensure that there is a consistent standard used to identify the most effective teachers across the state. So that the percentages are not used to set an arbitrary bar for excellence, they are paired with expected T-TESS and student growth performance standards/scores. “Performance standards were designed to guide districts to identify the most effective teachers in the state.” - TEA Performance standards provide a data-driven mechanism for holding all teachers to the same standard when seeking a TIA designation. The absence of a standard bar could lead to inequities across districts and campuses. Every eligible teacher has an equal opportunity to access TIA funds. The guidance should be interpreted as facilitating the identification of e.g. the top 5%, top 25%, etc. of teachers in the state, but not limiting any individual teachers’ access to TIA funding.
A few additional questions have been asked in trainings that we wanted to address. This document will be updated as additional questions arise: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1kccGtGXCiZMYc-ke77FjQmGb5-fgFjC_tpdwnAGbQws/edit?usp=sharing