Salt Lake City teachers may not be eligible for bonus checks from state; school district responds

Local News

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – Wednesday, the Utah legislature passed a motion proposing $1,500 bonus checks for all Utah teachers alongside a massive budget increase for Public Education, but now Salt Lake City teachers may not be eligible.

According to the motion, the bonus checks will go, “to K-12 educators and staff of districts that provide in-person or a combination of in-person and virtual options.” The Salt Lake City District is the only in the state currently teaching almost all classes online.

Speaker Brad Wilson clarified during the committee meeting that this would exclude Salt Lake District teachers from receiving the bonus; other representatives made it clear that this was unacceptable and actually may not exclude the SLCSD teachers because there in both on-campus and online learning happening within the district.

The SLC District responded this afternoon with a letter and interview with ABC4, reiterating that on-campus learning has always been the goal but the safety of students and staff comes first.

Yandary Chatwin, district spokesperson said, “Teachers are working under the system the board voted for, they didn’t have a say in the system in which they’re teaching. It might feel unfair to punish teachers for something they didn’t themselves vote for.”

In an earlier statement, the district also said, “Because the Board recognizes the value and importance of in-person learning, they have allowed for in-person instruction to take place at all 40 district schools in small groups and in other limited capacities.”

The final budget totals and requirements for the 2021 school year including these bonus checks must still be voted on and passed in the next legislative session.

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