FAQ About DMPS & TLC

TLC GOALS and VISION

What are the goals of the Iowa Teacher Leadership and Compensation (TLC) System?
Division VII of HF 215 establishes a statewide teacher leadership system. The system is designed to accomplish the following goals:

Attract promising candidates to the teaching profession by offering competitive starting salaries and offering short- and long-term professional development and leadership opportunities.

  • Retain effective teachers by providing enhanced career opportunities.
  • Promote collaboration by developing and supporting opportunities for teachers in schools and school districts statewide to learn from each other.
  • Reward professional growth and effective teaching by providing pathways for career opportunities that come with increased leadership responsibilities and involve increased compensation.
  • Improve student achievement by strengthening instruction.*

What is the vision for the DMPS TLC system?
The DMPS vision is to recognize and reward Teacher Leaders’ contributions to instructional improvement and to expand their influence and numbers in helping peers refine and improve their practices in the classroom through job-embedded professional development. 


FUNDING

How will the Teacher Leadership Supplement (TLS) be determined for districts with an approved Teacher Leadership and Compensation Plan? According to the legislation, the Teacher Leadership Supplement (TLS) will be calculated by the Department of Management using the certified enrollment count (i.e. the budget enrollment) for the budget year beginning July 1, 2015. The Department determined that the Teacher Leadership Supplement for FY16 for school districts with an approved plan will be $312.68. That amount will vary based on Supplemental State Aid for FY17 and certified enrollment for the budget year beginning July 1, 2016.*

Why has the initial TLC allocation changed? The final cost per pupil is based upon the actual statewide October 2013 Certified Enrollment. Based upon that number and the $50 million appropriated for 2014-15, the final per pupil allocation for TLC funding for 2014-15 was $308.82 (see also Q37). Per student allocations will be adjusted based on supplemental state aid (i.e., the per pupil funding for 2015-16 is $312.68).*

How long is the funding for the Teacher Leadership and Compensation System scheduled to last? The 2013 General Assembly appropriated $3.5 million in planning grants for the 2013-14 school year. The General Assembly also allocated $50 million per year for each of the 2014-15, 2015-16, and 2016-17 school years to support school districts selected to implement their Teacher Leadership and Compensation system. The funding is cumulative so that when the program is fully implemented in the 2016-17 school year, the State’s contribution will be $150 million per year, plus an annual growth factor. In the first year a school district implements its approved plan, payments flow from the $50 million allocation. In subsequent years, the Teacher Leadership Supplement (TLS) becomes a categorical funding stream included on the aid and levy worksheet.*


TEACHER LEADERSHIP ROLES

What TLC teacher leadership roles have been identified for DMPS teachers?

1,194 teacher leadership roles are included in the 2018-19 DMPS TLC system that fall into three levels: Coaches, District-Wide Teacher Leaders, and School-Based Teacher Leaders. Within each of these levels, multiple roles have been identified:

  • Coaches: Instructional Coaches, Special Education Support Teachers
  • District-Wide Teacher Leaders: District Secondary PLC Facilitators, Demonstration Classroom Teachers, TLC Coordinators, Equity Leads, Schools for Rigor Extended Core PLC Leaders
  • School-Based Teacher Leaders: School Leadership Team Members, Mentors, PLC Leaders in Schools for Rigor, English Learner (EL) Team Leads
Role # per School # District-wide
Instructional Coaches (65 Total)

  • Elementary
  • Middle School
  • High School
  • Districtwide Programs
  • Smouse
  • Van Meter
  • Central Academy
  • Central Campus
  • Scavo
  • Preschool: 2 – .5 FTE positions
 

  • 1
  • 1
  • 2
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
 

 

Instructional Coaches/IB Coordinators salary supplements only varies 25
Special Education Support Teachers 17
District Secondary PLC Facilitators 40
Demonstration Teachers 51
TLC Coordinators 2
Equity Leads 3
Schools for Rigor Extended Core PLC Leaders 23
School Leadership Team (SLT) Members

  • Elementary
  • Middle School
  • High School
  • Special Schools
 

  • 8
  • 9
  • 13
  • 6
489
Mentors (serving 1st & 2nd year teachers) 200
PLC Leaders, Schools for Rigor

  • Elementary
  • Middle School
  • High School
 

  • 7
  • 15
  • 15
235
EL Team Leads 48

 What is the salary supplement for each TLC position? How many additional contract days are there for each TLC position and what is the additional pay associated with these PD days?

Role Salary Supplement Additional Contract Days for PD & Associated Additional Pay
Instructional Coaches/IB Coordinators $3,300 4 days/$600
Special Education Support Teachers $3,300 3 days/$450
District Secondary PLC Facilitators $750 1 day/$150
Demonstration Teachers $1,000 3 days/$450
TLC Coordinators $7,000 30 days/$7,040
Equity Leads $7,000 30 days/$7,040
Schools for Rigor Extended Core PLC Leaders $675 2 days/$300
School Leadership Team (SLT) Members $1,000 3 days/$450
Mentors $2,500 3 days/$450
PLC Leaders, Schools for Rigor $2,500 3 days/$450
EL Team Leads $2,500 4 days/$600

If an Instructional Coach is only released from the classroom 50%, do they still get the full salary supplement and additional contract days?

Yes.  TLC salary supplements for instructional coaches are the same for part-time instructional coaches and for full-time instructional coaches.


INSTRUCTIONAL COACH ROLES

How will Instructional Coaches be allocated?

Instructional Coaches # Per School
Elementary School 1
Middle School 1
High School 2
District-Wide Programs 1
Ruby Van Meter/Smouse 1
Central Academy 1
Central Campus 1
Scavo 1
Preschool: 2 – .5 FTE positions

Instructional Coaches

Beginning with the 2018-19 school year, all Instructional Coaches, whether their salary is paid with TLC funds or general funds, will have the same job description. All Instructional Coaches support job-embedded professional development through collaborative and individual learning cycles, including their own professional development (75%), and school specific support (25%).  Instructional Coaches utilize the common language of effective teaching practices articulated in the Instructional Framework to support implementation of district initiatives directed at strengthening instruction.

How would the Instructional Coach position look different than a SIL position in regards to data teams?
The role of the TLC Instructional Coach is structured to support job-embedded professional development through collaborative and individual learning cycles, including their own professional development (75%), and school specific support (25%).

Instructional Coaches don’t evaluate teachers, do they?
No. Instructional Coaches focus on supporting the growth and development of teachers.  Instructional Coaches engage in co-planning with teachers, providing classroom support to teachers by observing and using coaching strategies and providing feedback to support effective classroom instruction.  This includes coaches and teachers working together to develop coaching plans, goals, and measures of success.

Are the Instructional Coach roles full-time or part-time?
Instructional Coach positions will be 50-100% out of the classroom.  Based on the feedback received from the focus group and the advisory committee, schools wanted flexibility to decide if positions would be full or part time.  Schools will be allocated FTEs. For example, if an elementary is allocated 1 FTE and decides to have two teachers serve as the instructional coach and share a classroom or interventionist position, both teachers will receive the salary supplement and additional contract days for training.  We want encourage teachers to stay in the classroom…not leave!

Schools have 1 or 2 FTEs for Instructional Coaches whose salary is paid with TLC funds. Does this mean that, for example, a school with 2 FTEs could employ 4 staff members coaching 50% of the time?
Yes, but keep in mind that coaches will be responsible for helping support teachers in their personal growth and development via learning cycles using the common language of effective teaching practices articulated in the Instructional Framework.  If they are less than 100% released, their ability to engage in this will be limited to certain times of the day and certain staff.

What are learning cycles?
Learning cycles include the development of coaching plans, goals, and measures of success.  Through learning cycles, TLC coaches support teachers through co-planning, modeling, and co-teaching lessons; as well as observing, providing feedback, and coaching classroom instruction.

Are teachers required to participate in collaborative or individual learning cycles with an instructional coach?
No. Coaches identify teams of people or individuals who are willing to participate in order to support their growth and development as a teacher.

Special Education Support Teachers

Special Education Support Teachers assist special education teachers with instructional strategies to promote literacy, mathematics, behavioral supports and provide co-teaching in classroom settings. Support teachers support implementation of district initiatives directed at strengthening instruction through the common language of effective teaching practices articulated in the Instructional Framework.


DISTRICT-WIDE TEACHER LEADER ROLES

District Secondary PLC Facilitator
PLC Facilitators will continue to be identified at the secondary level to facilitate district PLCs. District Secondary PLC Facilitators plan and lead five focused learning sessions on school improvement initiatives on early-release Wednesdays as part of the district’s professional development system. PLC Facilitators are 100% in the classroom with a salary supplement and additional contract days for training. Beginning in 2017-18, elementary district PD sessions will be facilitated at the school level by Instructional Coaches in order to best support SRG implementation. Secondary district PD sessions will continue to be facilitated by District PLC Facilitators in order to best support content area PD.

Demonstration Classroom Teacher
Demonstration classroom teachers are identified at the district level in partnership with school principals.  Demonstration teachers will represent a variety of areas of expertise across grade level bands and content areas such as core, technology, vocal music, band, art, physical education, world languages, CTE, and drama.

TLC Demonstration teachers provide a laboratory for colleagues and school leaders to see best practices in action. Core practices necessary for high-quality teaching and learning will be highlighted in demonstration classrooms across all content areas and grade spans.

  • Demonstration Classroom Teachers will model and debrief teaching practices with other practitioners.
  • Demonstrate reflective practice in classroom teaching, aligned to the Marzano Instructional Framework.
  • Serve as early implementers of new curriculum and technology.
  • Assist in developing instructional tools for teaching district curriculum.

Demonstration teachers display instructional practices for colleagues across the district to view.  Seeing the team-centered classrooms come to life will support others in their growth and development. TLC Demonstration Teachers are 100% in the classroom with a salary supplement and additional contract days for professional development.

TLC Coordinator
Two TLC Coordinator positions are funded by TLC – one to support elementary TLC positions and one to support secondary TLC positions.  Coordinators will orchestrate the implementation, facilitation, and evaluation of the TLC plan to insure the plan is implemented with fidelity and integrity.

Equity Leads
Equity Leads provide leadership and support to schools in the area of educational equity. Equity Leads assist with the understanding of cultural and racial identity and its impact on building culture and classroom practices, assisting with implementation of best practices through demonstration of culturally responsive lessons, conducting reflective sessions following observations, and organizing and delivering professional development activities that drive equity within the building.

Schools for Rigor Extended Core PLC Leaders
Schools for Rigor Extended Core PLC Leaders provide leadership for extended core PLCs for schools engaged in the Schools for Rigor work. Leaders provide additional support to carry out the critical function of effective PLCs focusing on focusing on rigorous standards-based teaching and learning in all phases – planning, delivery, reflection, and adjustment. Extended Core PLC Leaders are 100% in the classroom with a salary supplement and additional contract days for training.


SCHOOL-BASED TEACHER LEADERS

What are School-Based Teacher Leaders?
In past years, most school-based teacher leadership opportunities were informal; the DMPS TLC system enables the district to recognize Teacher Leaders’ contributions and provide additional training.  Three school-based roles have been formalized through TLC: School Leadership Team Member, Mentor, and PLC Leaders in Schools for Rigor. School-based Teacher Leaders are 100% in the classroom with a salary supplement and additional contract days for training.

School Leadership Team Member
A responsibility of an Instructional Coach and PLC Leaders in Schools for Rigor is to serve on the school leadership team. The TLC School Leadership Team Member position provides additional opportunities to identify other individuals within the building to serve as school-based teacher leaders with an associated salary supplement. 

Mentors
Mentors support job-embedded coaching and professional development to beginning teachers. Mentors may engage in co-planning, modeling, and co-teaching lessons; as well as observing, providing feedback, and coaching classroom instruction as appropriate. Mentors support implementation of district initiatives directed at strengthening core instruction through the common language of effective teaching practices articulated in the Instructional Framework.

 PLC Leaders, Schools for Rigor
These PLC Leaders provide leadership for school PLCs who are engaged in the Schools of Rigor work. The position provides the school leadership with additional support to carry out the critical function of effective PLCs focusing on rigorous standards-based teaching and learning in all phases – planning, delivery, reflection, and adjustment. PLC leaders at Schools for Rigor also participate actively on the School Leadership Team as needed at each school. 

English Learner (EL) Leads
EL Leads proment. EL Team leads are 100% in the classroom with a salary supplement and additional contract days for training.


TLC RENEWAL AND HIRING PROCESS

What is the process for renewing current TLC positions?
All current TLC team members excluding Demonstration Teachers and District Elementary PLC Facilitators will be emailed a form to complete expressing their interest in renewing their position(s) for the following school year. This is not a guarantee of position. Team members will meet with evaluators to review survey data and artifacts. The Teacher Leader’s evaluator will determine renewal.

What is the process for applying for open or new TLC positions?
All open and new positions will be posted on Applitrack in the Spring and as available during the school year. Applicants must submit completed applications including required references. Positions for the following school year will be determined by mid-June each year.

Are there special requirements for TLC positions?
Applicants must have at least three years of teaching experience including at least one year of teaching experience with the Des Moines Public Schools.  When a teacher is applying at the end of a school year for a TLC position beginning in the fall of the following school year, this includes the school year in which the teacher is applying.

When we go into Applitrack to work on the application will it prompt us for a resume and cover letter?
No.  Resumes and cover letters will not be used in determining placement in these positions.

If I am working towards a master’s degree, but don’t have it.  Should I check “yes” or “no?”
Check “yes” if it is the only one of the desired traits you have, but keep in mind the degree will need to be completed by the fall of the year in which the TLC position begins.  A master’s degree isn’t a requirement.

How many years of experience are required for TLC positions?
Applicants must have at least three years of teaching experience including at least one year of teaching experience with the Des Moines Public Schools.  When a teacher is applying at the end of a school year for a TLC position beginning in the fall of the following school year, this includes the school year in which the teacher is applying.

Can teachers apply for multiple positions?
Yes; however a teacher can only be hired for two TLC positions each school year.

Do teachers who are selected for a leadership role need to reapply for that role each year?
Yes. School districts, however, have some discretion in the format of the reapplication/renewal process. Teacher leadership roles are designed to be annual assignments. According to the legislation, teachers in leadership roles are required to complete “an annual review of the assignment to a teacher leadership role by the school’s or school district’s administration. The review shall include peer feedback on the effectiveness of the teacher’s performance of duty-specific to the teacher’s leadership role. A teacher who completes the time period of assignment to a leadership role may apply to the school’s or the school district’s administration for assignment in a new leadership role, if appropriate, or for reassignment.” Districts could design a streamlined renewal process for teachers in leadership roles as long as the process meets the requirements of the legislation stated above.*

Is an annual review required for teacher leaders and, if so, does the review require peer feedback?
Yes. The legislation requires an annual review of a teacher’s assignment to a leadership role by the school’s or school district’s administration. The review must include peer feedback on the effectiveness of the teacher’s performance of duty specific to the teacher’s leadership role. Peer feedback should come from the teachers served by the teacher leader. Feedback from the other district teacher leaders could also be included.*

Will teachers hired for these positions be required to reapply each year?
TLC legislation requires an annual review of a teacher’s assignment to a leadership role by the school’s or school district’s administration. The review must include peer feedback on the effectiveness of the teacher’s performance of duty specific to the teacher’s leadership role. Peer feedback should come from the teachers served by the teacher leader. Feedback from the other district teacher leaders could also be included.


REFERENCES for TLC POSITIONS

Can the supervisor reference be a district-wide supervisor?
To be considered a supervisor the person must be in your current supervisory chain and have evaluative responsibilities over the work you do, which for a teacher would normally be the principal or vice principal. A SIL is also an evaluator and can be counted as a supervisor. District Curriculum or an ELL coordinator are not evaluators and would not be considered as a supervisor. After much discussion it was determined these references cannot be both.  If you are an administrator and an evaluator you are a supervisor.  If you are a teacher or a counselor you are a colleague.

Is a reference letter required or is it just a reference survey?
A reference letter is not required. Just the reference forms which are preloaded in Applitrack.  They will be sent automatically to those individuals you select once you’ve submitted your application.

Does the reference from the administrator need to be from an administrator I am currently working with?
Yes, the administrator reference must be someone who is currently you supervisor (see question 1 above and the response).

Does the supervisor reference need to be the person who evaluates me or can it be any administrator that I work with?
Yes. To be considered a supervisor the person must be in your current supervisory chain and have evaluative responsibilities over the work you do, which for a teacher would normally be the principal or vice principal.

Could you have more than three references?
No.  Three total which includes 1 current supervisor; 2 current colleagues.

I am currently applying for other DMPS positions outside of the current TLC openings and want to keep the references for those positions.  How do I ensure that I have separate references for TLC?
These situations will be handled on a case by case basis by Natasha Hurley.  Please email Natasha (natasha.hurley@dmschools.org) and she will work it out with you.

In addition to a reference from a supervisor (my principal), the application requires two references from current DMPS colleagues.  Depending how supervisor and colleague are defined, could a SIL qualify as a colleague in light of references required for this application?
Since a SIL is in an administrative or supervisory role they are more apt to be supervisor reference.  The point here is that teachers and administrators are supposed to be equally involved in the process. By having a SIL write a Colleague reference, you are essentially taking that privilege away from a teacher. 


ELIGIBILITY for TEACHER LEADER POSITIONS

Are school counselors eligible to participate in a school district’s teacher leadership and compensation plan?
The focus of the Teacher Leadership and Compensation System is on strengthening the content instruction and pedagogical skills of classroom teachers. If a counselor meets the requirement to be eligible for a teacher leader role (i.e. holds a valid teaching license, has three years of teaching experience and one year of experience in the district), then they could apply for a teacher leader role.*


TLC and PEER REVIEW

What is the intersection between the TLC system and the peer review legislation from 2012?
Under Iowa Code section 284.8(1), school districts are required to conduct annual, rather than every third year, reviews of non-probationary teacher performance. The first and second years of such reviews will be “conducted by a peer group of teachers.” The Iowa General Assembly specifically prohibited peer reviews from being used as the basis for recommending that a teacher be placed in an intensive assistance program. As such, the peer review is intended for the purposes of coaching and improvement. For school districts implementing a teacher leadership and compensation plan, there is an opportunity to include peer review into the roles and responsibilities of their teacher leaders. Model teachers, mentor teachers, and instructional coaches are all examples of teacher leader roles that could be involved in the peer review process.*

* Language taken directly from Iowa Department of Education TLC System documents