WITZ Radio News is affiliate of Network Indiana
INDIANAPOLIS -- The teacher pay discussion moves to the Senate after next week.
Senate President Pro Tem Rod Bray says teacher pay and school funding in general are top priorities for the Senate. But like the House, he says Republicans won't try to order schools to spend money on teachers. Not only is that a local school board responsibility, but Bray says in many cases it would upend agreements reached through collective bargaining.
House Republicans' main teacher-pay bill would instead encourage schools to limit their non-classroom spending to 15-percent of their budgets, and explain their reasons if they went beyond that. On Monday, the House will vote on a budget which pays down pension liabilities to free up local money.
The budget also restores a teacher bonus-pay program Governor Holcomb proposed killing, and a tax credit for teachers who purchase their own school supplies. The bonus program has been critiicized as inadequate, but Speaker Brian Bosma says the bonuses and the tax credit are among the few ways the state can get money to teachers directly.