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  • Joanne Jacobs

Minnesota's bonus for non-white teachers nets 6 teachers

Teachers of color who relocate to Minnesota can earn bonuses under a new state program: $2,500 when hired, another $2,500 for staying in the district for four years, and up to $3,000 more if they teach in a shortage area. How it's working out? So far, districts have recruited six out-of-state teachers, reports Eder Campuzano in the Star-Tribune. None has qualified for a bonus, but some will when they complete a state license.


OK, a few bugs in the system, writes Matt Shaver on Minnesota Reformer. He suggests expanding the program to include bonuses for recent graduates with education degrees, not just licensed teachers.


"Research shows educators of color improve learning and outcomes for all kids, especially kids of color," writes Shaver, a former teacher who is now policy director of EdAllies. "Minnesota’s teaching corps is 95% white, despite a diverse student population of 37% Black, Indigenous and other communities of color."


\Minneapolis Public Schools will waive seniority rules to retain "underrepresented teachers, if layoffs are necessary, reports Ava Kian in MinnPost.


A lawsuit is challenging the policy as racially discriminatory, but legal experts note that "the policy doesn't mention race," writes Rilyn Eischens in Minnesota Reformer. "The language could apply to Latino teachers, as well as LGBTQ, low-income and multilingual teachers."


Lynnell Mickelson explains how black teachers pressured white union leaders to seek the seniority waiver.


Seventy percent of students -- but only 17 percent of teachers -- are non-white in Minneapolis and St. Paul public schools, according to Black Men Teach.


I'd like to see seniority waived in layoffs -- the district is losing enrollment -- for teachers in high-need specialties, such as math, physics and special education, and highly rated teachers.

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