Indiana lawmakers passed the next two-year state budget this week, which reduces taxpayer-funded debt by over $1 billion, provides opportunities for future tax cuts and reforms and makes unprecedented investments in K-12 education.
The budget is a historic win for all Hoosier students and teachers. K-12 education, which accounts for half of all state spending, will receive an additional $1.9 billion in new money over the biennium, including $600 million annually to increase teacher pay.
This record investment fulfills and exceeds Gov. Eric Holcomb’s Next Level Teacher Compensation Commission’srecommendations for raising teacher salaries. It’s important for our schools to retain and attract the best educators, especially as we compete against other states for talent.
We also recommend K-12 schools set starting teacher salaries at $40,000, and require schools to dedicate at least 45 percent of tuition support to teacher pay. If those benchmarks aren’t met, schools will be required to report to the Indiana Department of Education or apply for a waiver.