As we reported yesterday, a group called HISD Parent Visionaries was asking people to lobby school board members to insure that principal bonuses in Superintendent Terry Grier's showcase Apollo 20 program would not be paid out of general funds that should go to other schools.
Today, they're claiming "an incredible win," saying the agenda item tonight has been modified so that private donations, and not general funds, will be used for the possible $240,000 in bonuses.
Said the group:
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We agree that if private funds are raised and earmarked for Apollo 20 they certainly should go to those schools. In addition, we want to be sure that all principal leaders across HISD have a fair chance at equitable incentives and bonuses because we are in those schools everyday and we know the hours principals put in and the challenges they face. All of our principals deserve no less.
HISD board member Anna Eastman also sent out an e-mail. "I appreciate the concern around this item regarding the amount of the incentives, particularly in light of the pending state funding crisis, recent conversations around projected cuts to summer school and the probability of cuts that will extend into the classroom in the future," she wrote.
The Apollo 20 program, which floods selected low-performing schools with resources, is supposed to be funded with federal and private grants. Parents had protested about the possibility of using general district funds if those grants didn't materialize, or if fund-raising faltered.
All this will be discussed at tonight's board meeting.