The state should support differential pay for effective teaching in shortage and high-need areas. This goal was consistent between 2015 and 2017.
Shortage-subject Areas: Louisiana defines mathematics, biology, chemistry, physics and special education as shortage areas, as part of the Critical Teacher Shortage Incentive Program. Louisiana offers $3,000 per year for the first four consecutive years of teaching to newly certified teachers who agree to teach in one of these subjects at the elementary or secondary level. This program is currently not being funded.
High-need Schools: Louisiana teachers serving in low-performing or Title I schools are eligible to receive up to an additional $6,000 per year for up to four years. This program is currently not being funded.
Louisiana Revised Statutes 17:427.2; 17.427.3
Ensure adequate funding is available.
Louisiana is commended for delineating strong policy to support differential pay. NCTQ encourages the state to prioritize funding for teachers who teach in shortage-subject areas and at high-need schools.
Louisiana was helpful in providing NCTQ with facts that enhanced this analysis.
Louisiana should, to the extent possible, help to ensure that funding is available to fully fund these strong incentive programs so that teachers and teacher candidates are attracted to teach in shortage-subject areas and high-need schools.
8B: High-Need Schools and Subjects
States should help address chronic shortages and needs. States should ensure that state-level policies (such as a uniform salary schedule) do not interfere with districts' flexibility in compensating teachers in ways that best meet their individual needs and resources. However, when it comes to addressing chronic shortages, states should do more than simply get out of the way. They should provide direct support for differential pay for effective teaching in shortage subject areas and high-need schools. Attracting effective and qualified teachers to high-need schools or filling vacancies in hard-to-staff subjects are problems that are frequently beyond a district's ability to solve. States that provide direct support for differential pay in these areas are taking an important step in promoting the equitable distribution of quality teachers. Short of providing direct support, states can also use policy levers to indicate to districts that differential pay is not only permissible but necessary.