New state program picks San Perlita school district

SAN PERLITA — The state has selected six teachers here to earn big bonuses as part of a new program aimed at helping rural school districts draw better teachers.

The Texas Education Agency’s Teacher Incentive Allotment program has recognized Maria Rodriguez and Jayne Rhodes as master educators, Criselda Rubalcaba as an exemplary educator and Angelica Martinez, Julia Diaz and Rosanna Gomez as recognized educators, Superintendent Albert Peña stated Tuesday.

The honors come after the state selected the school district as one of the first 26 districts approved for the program, the Texas Education Agency stated in a press release, adding 3,650 teachers were tapped from across the state.

The program will pay the district’s selected teachers incentives ranging from $7,186 to $26,811, depending on their designations, Peña stated.

“ Their commitment to the San Perlita ISD community and the students it serves is evident as they have expressed a desire to not only become a more effective teacher but also serve as a role model for their peers,” district officials stated.

Drawing ‘effective’ teachers

The program aims to help rural and low-income districts draw more “effective” educators.

“ The Teacher Incentive Allotment provides a pathway for the most effective teachers to earn six-figure salaries while enabling districts in rural and high-needs areas to improve educator recruitment and retention,” the TEA stated in its press release.

Early this year, district officials began working toward landing state recognitions for teachers here.

“ Beginning in the spring of 2020, we were subject to an intensive multi-step application process that included review of the development of educator evaluation plans, student progress measurements and robust stakeholder engagement,” district officials stated.