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Senate Approves Teacher Bonus, Scholarship Plan

February 27, 2012, 5:00 PM

Senate Approves Teacher Bonus, Scholarship Plan
PIERRE, SD - The South Dakota Senate has approved a substantially changed version of Gov. Dennis Daugaard's plan to give bonuses to top teachers.

The Senate voted 22-12 to pass the measure, which now returns to the House for consideration of changes made by the Senate.

Supporters say it will improve student achievement, but opponents say it could harm education by discouraging teachers from collaborating with each other.

The bill sets up scholarships for college students who agree to teach in critically needed subjects. It also gives $2,500 annual bonuses to math and science teachers.

The bill includes the governor's original plan to give $5,000 annual bonuses to the top 20 percent of each school district's teachers. But schools could create their own teacher reward plans or not take part at all.

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