Des Moines, Iowa — Iowa Governor Terry Branstad and Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds have announced that all 336 Iowa school districts have applied to join the state’s Teacher Leadership and Compensation System — what they call, “the most comprehensive teacher leadership system in the nation.”
They say that this targeted effort to tap into the expertise of top teachers to better support the more demanding work that teachers are expected to do and to raise student achievement, is the centerpiece of the landmark education reform package adopted by the Legislature and signed by Branstad in 2013.
The legislation created a three-year phase-in process to develop a statewide teacher leadership system, with the goal of all school districts participating by the 2016-17 school year. As of the end of last week, all school districts in Iowa have developed and submitted local plans to participate in the teacher leadership system. When the teacher leadership system is fully phased-in, it will cost $150 million annually.
Brandstad and Reynolds say that the teacher leadership system rewards outstanding teachers with leadership opportunities, attracts promising teachers with competitive starting salaries and support, and fosters greater collaboration for all teachers to learn from each other.
Reyonds says that in order to achieve our goal of making Iowa schools the best in the nation, we must continue to be innovative in our approach.
Iowa Department of Education Director Ryan Wise said feedback from Iowa teachers and principals has been overwhelmingly positive.