“I feel like a brand new teacher”: Union seeking bonuses for teachers who taught hybrid classes

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — The Orange County Classroom Teachers Association is trying to get a stipend for teachers who taught both online and in-person classes at the same time.

The proposal by the union to Orange County Public Schools suggests a $500 bonus per quarter, which could total $2,000 for a teacher who taught hybrid all year.

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Matt Hazel is an Orange County High School English teacher with 10 years experience. He says this year has been the toughest of them all.

“We’ve been doing a pretty good job teaching kids this year, but it’s been different,” Hazel says. The challenges of remote learning and hybrid...I feel like a brand new teacher.”

Legislative Update: Week 5

You may have heard the governor say he wants to give every teacher a $1000 bonus. Watch FEA President Andrew Spar’s legislative update to find out what he DIDN’T say. #FundOurFutureFL

Posted by Florida Education Association (FEA) on Thursday, April 1, 2021

Hazel doesn’t mean that in a good way. He says the work has been extremely difficult.

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“A lot of extra hours and a lot of extra time and a lot of extra stress and anxiety,” Hazel says.

It’s because of that additional work that the teachers union thinks they deserve the stipend, as Volusia County Schools has already done for its teachers.

“We know that the district does have this money from stimulus money that’s left over,” OCCTA President Wendy Doromal says. “We think it’s a way to be compensated.”

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Hazel says it would just be a nice ‘thank you’ for the teachers’ extra efforts.

“It would let us feel heard, and validated.”

Cierra Putman

Cierra Putman,

Cierra Putman flew south to join Eyewitness News in July 2016.