Branstad: Teacher Leadership and Compensation System a success

Branstad 1From Press Release


Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad today highlighted the success of the innovative new Teacher Leadership and Compensation System (TLC) at Southeast Polk Junior High School during his weekly press conference. The press conference occurred following the last of three visits with school districts this month to learn how they are using TLC to raise student achievement and raise the status of the teaching profession. The TLC discussion at Southeast Polk followed visits to the Benton and Rock Valley school districts. Southeast Polk is one of the 39 school districts across the state launching the first year of the TLC program.

“As we visit with school districts engaged in the Teacher Leadership and Compensation System, which is the centerpiece of Iowa’s landmark 2013 education reform package, we’re hearing that better utilizing teacher expertise and creating more time for collaboration is transforming instruction,” said Branstad. “Though much work lies ahead, we know that teacher leadership will drive the other reforms needed to give Iowa students a world-class education and revitalize the teaching profession.”

Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds, who participated in the roundtables in both Rock Valley and Benton school districts, was unable to attend the Southeast Polk roundtable discussion because she is leading a trade mission to Brazil.

“We have more people in leadership positions, which creates more time to get things done,” said Rock Valley Community School Superintendent Chad Janzen about why TLC is helping to transform instruction in his district of 840 students.

The TLC system was launched with 39 school districts that enroll about one-third of Iowa’s students. Seventy-six additional school districts, representing another third of Iowa student enrollment, will join the program next school year (2015-2016). All 338 school districts will have the option of joining the TLC system by the 2016-2017 school year. When fully phased in, the program will cost about $150 million annually, and much of the funding will be used to increase teacher leaders’ salaries and attract more individuals to the teaching profession by offering more competitive starting salaries.

“I’m optimistic that within a few years every school district in Iowa will be part of TLC, which is the most comprehensive teacher leadership system in the country,” said Iowa Department of Education Deputy Director Ryan Wise, who oversees the TLC system for the state. “This exciting work is about supporting teachers to do their best work so that our students can do their best work.”

Branstad concluded by saying, “Lieutenant Governor Reynolds and I believe that every Iowa child deserves a globally competitive education, and we know that starts with great teaching in every classroom. The Teacher Leadership and Compensation System is working to ensure we’re attracting the best and brightest to the classroom.”