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WVDE Guidance on implementing HB 206 sent to counties
Many people have questions on how some of the items contained in HB 206 will be implemented. State Superintendent Paine has sent a couple of directives to county administrators outlining how they are to implement measures in the bill.
Below are some of those implementation directives from the WVDE dealing with the attendance incentive bonus and the three-step salary increase for math and special education teachers. We will pass along additional guidance as it is issued by the WVDE.
If you have questions or concerns about the answers below or have a different question and are looking for answers feel free to contact the WVEA Help Center at 1.866.568.9832 or email from the link on the WVEA website, www.wvea.org.
ATTENDANCE INCENTIVE BONUS
Q. Can county boards of education utilize the attendance incentive bonus funding to fund their current locally funded attendance bonus or will this new state-funded bonus be in addition to any locally funded bonuses?
A. This new state-funded bonus will be in addition to any locally funded bonuses.
Q. Will contributions to a leave bank or the donation of a personal day to a coworker count as a personal day used for determination of the $500 bonus?
A. No, the donation of days to leave banks or other coworkers will not count as a personal leave day used by an employee for purposes of the eligibility determination for the attendance incentive bonus.
Q. Will bereavement leave count as a personal day used for determination of the $500 bonus?
A. Yes, a bereavement leave day is actually a personal day, so the use of a personal day for that purpose would count as day used for purposes of the eligibility determination for the attendance incentive bonus.
THREE-STEP SALARY INCREASE FOR MATH AND SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS
Q. In some counties, they have elementary teachers who teach math more than 60% of the day. For example, there may be 4 fifth grade classes at a school and one teacher teaches math to all 4 classes, one teacher teaches them all science, one teaches them all social studies, etc. Would such a teacher be eligible for the three-step increase for math? Are there any special certification requirements for elementary math?
A. An elementary teacher in the situation described would be eligible for the three-step salary increase. There are no special elementary math certification requirements. HB 206 indicates that the individuals must be fully certified in their area of study. Such language could be interpreted to encompass elementary education.
Q. How do you determine if a math teacher is teaching for at least 60% of the day?
A. Counties could utilize the percentage of total instructional minutes available each day, the percentage of total class periods taught, etc. to determine if the 60% threshold has been met. For teachers who teach at a school on a block schedule, both semesters should be considered when making the determination of whether a teacher meets the 60% requirement. For example, if a teacher teaches 100% math in the first semester and 0% math in the second semester, that is only teaching math 50% on average for the year and they would not be eligible for the three-step increase. By contrast, a teacher who teaches 50% math in the first semester and 100% math in the second semester would be at 75% on average for the year and they would be eligible.
Q. How are substitutes who are filling special education and math positions treated for purposes of the additional three-step salary increase?
A. If the substitute is fully certified in special education and teaching special education courses or fully certified in math and teaching math at least 60% of the day, the substitute would be paid as follows:
a. For days 1-10 in a position, the day to day substitute salary would not be impacted regardless of the subject being taught. Those individuals are paid at zero years of experience on the salary tables, so no additional years of experience would be added for special education/math.
b. For days 11-30 consecutively in the same position, the pay for a substitute is based on their actual years of experience. WVDE does not believe that this would include the additional 3 years of experience for special education/math.
c. For days 31+, a substitute is paid the full county salary for the position, which includes state basic, state equity plus any county supplements. At this point, the pay for the substitute should include the 3 additional years of experience for special education/math.
Note: If the substitute is not fully certified in the appropriate content area, they are not eligible for the three-step increase in determining their substitute pay.
Q. Is a full-time classroom teacher that teaches a split of special education and regular education courses eligible for the three-step increase? Should the amount be prorated?
A. A fully-certified classroom teacher who teaches a split of regular education and special education courses is entitled to a pro-rated share of the three-step increase. For example, if the teacher has a 60/40 regular education/special education split, they would receive 40% of the value of the three-step increase in their calculation.
Q. Do special education co-teachers qualify for the three-step salary increases?
A. Assuming that the co-teacher is fully certified and is working with special education students as their co-teaching duties, then yes, the co-teacher would be eligible for the three-step increase as a special education teacher.
Q. If a classroom teacher is working in a regular education job but holds a special education certification, are they entitled to the three-step salary increase?
A. No, in order to receive the three-step salary increase, a classroom teacher needs to actually be working in a special education position. Simply holding the necessary certification alone does not entitle someone to the additional pay. For example, a regular elementary education teacher who holds a special education certification who happens to have students with IEPs in their regular education classroom is not entitled to the additional pay.
Q. Can a math or special education teacher who is working on a permit, out of field authorization or alternative certification be eligible for the three-step salary increase?
A. No, in order to receive the three-step salary increase, a classroom teacher must be fully certified in the content area.