In October 2014, a committee of Solon teachers, administrators, and parents submitted a grant application to the Iowa Department of Education in order to create a teacher leadership and compensation system.
The goals of Iowa's Teacher Leadership and Compensation System are:
- Attract able and promising new teachers by offering competitive starting salaries and offering short-term 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
In December 2014, the Solon Community School District was notified it will receive nearly $400,000 annually beginning in the 2015-16 school year to implement a teacher leadership system.
Solon Teacher Leadership System
The district's teacher leadership system will create approximately twenty-five supplemental and full-time teacher leadership roles. These roles include one instructional coach at each attendance center, one districtwide mentor coach for beginning teachers, approximately fourteen professional partners to support teachers new to the district, and approximately seven model teachers who regularly demonstrate exemplary instructional strategies to their peers.