Tax Breaks Are Proposed to Attract and Retain Teachers

We are keeping a close eye on Senate Bill 807, or the Teacher Recruitment and Retention Act of 2017, which would help teachers in two ways.

One of the features in this bill is that it gives new teachers tax credits for money they spend to earn their teaching credentials, including college tuition and certification tests. The other thing this bill would do is allow exemption status (from paying state taxes on income earned from teaching) to full-time teachers who remain in the profession for more than 5 years.

The bill is co-sponsored by Senator Henry Stern (D-Agoura Hills) and co-sponsored by Senator Cathleen Galgiani (D-Stockton) who agree that it is important to address the critical need to retain teachers and to recruit teachers during this teacher shortage in California.

The bill has been received positively by most, as education leaders all over the state applauded the bill.

“It’s time California leads the nation and sends a clear message to all current and future teachers: you are valued and California will reward your commitment to California’s kids and future,” said Bill Lucia, president of the Sacramento-based lobbying and research organization EdVoice, which is pushing hard for passage.

In 2014-15, teacher preparation programs have suffered from a decline in enrollments — down 40% from 2010-11 and 73% from 2001-02.

Of course, we know that this means that schools with large numbers of low-income, students of color are disproportionately affected by turnover.

There are currently more than 155,000 students in California that are taught by “non-permanent” instructors. The teacher shortage is real.  

It should be noted that the California Teacher’s Association (CTA) has yet to take a position on the bill, but according to a union spokesperson, CTA is in full agreement on the seriousness of the problem.

What do you think?

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Leticia Chavez-Garcia

Leticia Chavez-Garcia

Leticia Chavez-Garcia is a Mother, Grandmother, former Middle School Teacher, former Member of a School Board of Education and an Education Advocate for hundreds of parents and students in the Inland Empire. Having become a mother at 15, Leticia knows what it’s like to be a single mother trying to navigate the education system. Leticia received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Political Science and Public Administration from California Baptist University and a Masters’ Degree in Education Technology from Cal State Fullerton in her 30’s. Leticia has used her knowledge and experience to help hundreds of families as an Education Advocate in the Inland Empire and currently works as an Education Specialist.

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