Tennessee: New Legislation Looks To Double The Current Classroom Stipend For Teachers From $200 To $500

Teachers spend a substantial amount of their own money each year on classroom supplies including pens, paper, decorations, project materials, and more.

The ability to go to the shop whenever teachers needs anything is crucial for their teaching style. Every time that they need a material for a student project, they need specific colors of paper for some type of activity.  While the $200 in BEP funds will assist, it won’t cover all.

The Basic Education Program (or BEP) is the state-approved curriculum used in Tennessee right now. It provides yearly funding of $200 for teaching supplies.

Trauger, a teacher, indicated that she plans for this possibility by allocating an extra $100 each month in her personal budget. Although it is not her intention, she anticipates having some requests from her students.

However, in the near future, educators may get a little bonus. HB0007, presented by Cepicky (R-Culleoka) would raise the allowance for educational supplies.

It’s been his experience that instructors invest a lot of money into their classes. The amount spent by some educators exceeds $1,000.

The plan, if approved, would provide an additional $300 for classroom supplies for each teacher, more than the existing allowance of $200. Every teacher would be given $500 to spend however they see fit, with any leftover funds going into a common pot to be used to purchase classroom supplies.

The Tennessee Education Association (TEA) expresses profound appreciation for the possible 150% raise, despite the fact that it is both overdue and one-time only.

TEA president Tanya Coats has remarked, “Every year, we need to have a percentage increase in the budget that enables educators receive the necessary resources for every kid throughout the state of Tennessee.”

Cepicky said that the increase will be paid for by the new TISA education plan that the state would roll out for the next school year.

According to Traeger, “it’s going to be enough that then teachers can have the flexibility to say, ‘Hey I can buy the things that I really feel like I need without knowing that I’m going to be dipping into my pocket.’”

Once the next legislative year begins, the bill will be presented to the General Assembly.




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