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: Texas does not explicitly support differential pay by which a teacher can earn additional compensation by teaching certain subjects; however, the state allows teachers to seek out certification in master reading, master mathematics, master science, or master technology. Master teachers at high-need schools are eligible for an annual stipend of $5,000, which helps to provide additional compensation for additional responsibilities that include mentoring other teachers.
High-need Schools: Texas teachers can earn additional pay by working at a high-need school. Texas has a Careers to Classrooms Program, which gives $5,000 in grants to assist future teachers in obtaining certification so that they may work in schools with high concentrations of educationally disadvantaged students.
Support differential pay initiatives for effective teachers in shortage-subject areas.
Texas should encourage districts to link compensation to district needs. Such policies can help districts achieve a more equitable distribution of teachers.
Texas asserted that there are no policies in place that prohibit a district from implementing differential pay.
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.