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Oregon City Schools Lose Grant Money For Teachers

A Portland-area school district has lost federal funding for an initiative to give teachers money when they do extra work to help students.

The Chalkboard Project won a $24 million federal grant last year to test new reward schemes for teachers at seven school districts. The CLASS project encourages teachers to take on leadership roles and extra work. Chalkboard helped school administrators set up CLASS incentive agreements with local unions.

Oregon City was one of the participating districts. But educators there told Secretary Arne Duncan on his visit here last week, that their CLASS agreement was in trouble with his department.

“My short answer is I would love to continue the conversation,” Duncan said.

Now, Oregon City has been forced to give up $2 million in Teacher Incentive Grant money because teachers and administrators couldn’t agree on changes that would meet federal guidelines. The Oregon City superintendent blames the “compensation models” that the feds required.

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