INDIANAPOLIS—On Friday, the Distressed Unit Appeal Board (DUAB) held a special meeting where they approved a stipend to be allocated to the teachers and staff of the Gary Community School Corporation. The stipend comes in recognition of the hard work of Gary school staff over the course of this pandemic. Senate Assistant Democratic Leader Eddie Melton (D-Gary) released the following comments on educators and school staff in his community being acknowledged for their work:

“Our educators have stepped up like never before to deal with the challenges of this pandemic, and I’m very happy to see them recognized in the way they deserve,” Sen. Melton said. “Too often, we celebrate teachers and staff with praise and kind words, instead of the compensation that they need. I’m proud to see the school staff in my community receiving both. It’s especially impactful that this honor is happening today as we continue celebrating National Teacher Appreciation Week.
“The hard work, flexibility and adaptability of our school staff and educators over this last year was remarkable, and I hope our hard working school professionals know that they are appreciated. The public service that school staff provide to our communities through the guidance and education of our students is extremely valuable, and I hope the stipends awarded today serve to clearly communicate that fact.

“These stipends, along with the salary increases for teachers that we were able to secure in the budget this session, will go a long way in moving Indiana forward and demonstrating that we truly value our teachers and school staff. I’m looking forward to the next meeting and hearing how the Gary School Corporation will be spending the remainder of the federal funds that have been allocated to them. Right now, we have a unique opportunity to invest in our district and truly change the academics and culture for the entire community.

“Once again, I would like to thank our federal government for providing Indiana with the help and resources, allowing us to fairly compensate our teachers this year. I also want to thank our congressman, Frank Mrvan Jr., for advocating for public education and pushing for increased funding for our schools and teachers. Because of the federal assistance that Indiana has received, we’re able to offer Hoosier teachers more than just praise and appreciation for their essential work for the first time in too long.”