State superintendent backs possible bonus to boost teacher skills

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - West Virginia State Schools Superintendent Steve Paine says he supports a possible one-time pay incentive for teachers to improve their math education and teaching skills.

He tells The Charleston Gazette-Mail that Gov. Jim Justice will provide more information about the idea on Wednesday during the State of the State address. Paine says he plans to create a strategy that gives teachers uncertified in math an incentive to increase their skills.

Paine says there's an immediate need for certified math teachers. A state Department of Education report found that "non-fully certified" teachers taught 38 percent of public school math courses for grades seven through 11.

Teacher unions have opposed pay rates based on teaching subjects. State Education Association president Dale Lee says the state should instead offer teachers free certification courses.