Mission (im)Possible Stealing Teachers from Forsyth

The W-S Journal is reporting that Guilford is stealing away Forsyth teachers through Mission (im)Possible. Click here for the story.

An excerpt:

Winston-Salem/Forsyth County school officials are looking for new ways to recruit the 650 teachers they will need next year, in part because of concerns about increasing competition from Guilford County Schools.

Guilford’s Mission Possible program offers higher salaries and signing bonuses to people who agree to teach in certain positions or be administrators in 29 of Guilford’s 116 schools. The program also offers performance bonuses for people at those schools if the students do well. A high-school math teacher, for example, could earn as much as $13,000 extra. High-school principals at one of the 29 schools could get as much as $15,000 in bonus money if the schools do well.

Teachers throughout the system with one through three years of experience are paid third-year teacher salaries. Teachers in other positions, including exceptional children, are also paid more at all schools.

Guilford got an $8 million federal grant to offer the program.

“The response in terms of recruitment has been very positive. For example, we have over 150 interested applicants in math at the secondary level,” said Peggy Thompson, Guilford’s chief human-resources officer, in an e-mail.

The program is causing headaches for Forsyth County school officials, who have heard that at least eight experienced Winston-Salem/Forsyth County high-school math teachers plan to leave for Guilford next school year.

“Guilford County is really punishing us right now,” James Lucas, a human-resources manager for the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County school system, told members of the school board last month. “I talked to 10 math teachers … and they signed eight of them.”

There’s not much that Winston-Salem/Forsyth County can do right now to match Guilford’s financial incentives, Superintendent Don Martin said. Winston-Salem/Forsyth County schools are in the last year of a six-year program to increase the amount of teacher supplements. Next year, the school system will have more money to use on recruiting and keeping teachers, he said.

E.C. 🙂

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