87 retiring IPS teachers to get $20K payouts

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.– Indianapolis Public Schools says 87 teachers took retirement offers from the district.

The $20,000 payments will be distributed at the end of the year. They were offered to teachers who had given notice by April 20 of a plan to retire. IPS confirmed they were hoping for 100-150 teachers, but fell short.

More than 200 educators were eligible for the retirement offer.

IPS is working to cut millions from their budget and delayed referenda asking for about $725 million from the May primary to the November ballot.

The original referenda were for nearly $1 billion over eight years, but the district reduced the price tag after some initial sticker shock from community members and state officials.

Without the funds from the referenda, IPS says it could be forced to freeze teacher and employee compensation, reduce educational programs for students, reduce the quality of services for students with special needs, continue to defer building maintenance and scale back transportation services.

The retirement offer wasn’t so much of an effort to cut costs as it was a way to plan ahead for future hiring needs. While the 87 payments of $20,000 total $1.74 million, hiring newer teachers to fill in likely won’t cost as much as keeping the veteran educators on longer. Some teachers may not need to be immediately replaced.

Indianapolis Education Association President Rhondalyn Cornett issued the following statement:

“I’m happy that even though they didn’t get the number they were looking for…they still went forward with it. I’m sad that I’m going to lose so many good teachers.”

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