The Seattle Foundation President and CEO Norm Rice today announced funding for Teach for America in Seattle Public Schools. I want to thank The Seattle Foundation and all the donors for their support. Please see the attached announcement for more information.
The TFA teachers receive a typical first-year salary from the District and are members of the Seattle Education Association. They will, however, receive additional support from TFA during the school year. The Seattle Foundation will cover the $4,000 fee per teacher paid to TFA– an estimated $20,000 total. This fee is used to offset the cost of training.
“We know that an exceptional teacher in every classroom can help close the achievement gap and increase the academic success of all of our students. Teach for America brings even more exceptional and motivated teachers into our classrooms,” said Norman B. Rice, President and CEO of The Seattle Foundation. “Education remains one of our top priorities, and I want to thank local community members for supporting Teach for America by donating to The Seattle Foundation, including James R. Faulstich, Matt Griffin and Evelyne Rozner, Intelius, Inc., Will Poole and Janet Levinger, Ann Ramsay-Jenkins (William M. Jenkins Fund), and the Satya and Rao Remala Foundation.”
If more TFA teachers are hired in Seattle during the next year, Teach for America can use additional Seattle Foundation grant funds for the training and support of those teachers, Rice said.
What appears to have happened is the above group of people/entities gave the money to the Seattle Foundation who in turn are giving it to the district to pay TFA. (I note that Mr. Griffin is a top funder of the School Board incumbents' campaigns.)
I will also point out that I have found no study or evidence that TFA teachers have helped closed the achievement gap in any school. Mr. Rice apparently buys into the idea that every single TFA recruit is an "exceptional teacher." What he bases that on I cannot say except maybe he believes TFA's own press releases.
The "next year" phrase is unclear to SPS (they think it means next year as well). I have a call into Seattle Foundation to ask.