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Charlotte Area

Bonuses On The Way For Some Teachers

Lisa Worf
Courtney Mason in her classroom at Piney Grove Elementary.

Many teachers across the state are set to get belated Christmas gifts in the form of merit bonuses, pending a vote this week by the state board of education.

General Assembly members approved nearly $14 million last year to reward teachers whose students showed growth in third-grade reading and passed advanced placement and international baccalaureate exams.

With the state board’s approval, high school teachers will receive a $50 bonus for each of their students who passed an AP or IB exam, up to $2,000. AP and IB courses are more rigorous and are designed to prepare students for college. In Charlotte about 9,500 students got passing AP and IB grades. When social security paid by the state is added in, that translates into local teachers being poised to receive nearly $510,000.

Third-grade reading teachers had to rank in the top 25 percent in their districts in order to be eligible for bonuses. Their students also had to show improvement over the past year. Locally, all but 11 of the 125 teachers in that top percentile qualified for the bonuses. They will each receive nearly $4,200 in merit bonuses.