Panel OKs bill linking student tests, teacher pay

Teacher pay would be linked to student performance under a merit pay bill that has cleared an Indiana House committee.

The Republican-controlled House Education Committee voted 8-5 along party lines Wednesday to approve the bill, which is part of Gov. Mitch Daniels' aggressive education agenda. The bill requires teachers to be evaluated every year, and those who fall into the lowest two of four evaluation categories wouldn't get automatic pay raises.

Local districts would create their own evaluation systems but would have to include objective measures of student achievement such as scores on statewide standardized tests.

Meanwhile, a Senate committee was set to vote Wednesday afternoon on another big part of Daniels' education agenda — a contentious voucher proposal that would direct taxpayer money to private schools.

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