The board voted 6-1 to adopt the district’s 2020-21 compensation plan, following two delayed votes over the course of nearly a month. Trustee Chad Chadwell was the lone dissenter.
“This is a difficult decision we have to make,” Chadwell said. “The environment that we’re in right now is cost-cutting and focused on our budget moving forward.”
The salary increase amounts to $8.6 million. The compensation plan will be included in the district's 2020-21 budget which is expected to be adopted by the board in June.
Teachers and librarians will see a $1,100 general pay increase and an adjustment for those who have between two and six years of service to alleviate compression, according to the presentation. Starting teacher salary will be $50,000. Eligible pay grades will receive an increase equal to 2% of the pay range midpoint.
Trustee Cory Vessa described the vote as “agonizing" and said she was not at peace with voting against a raise but that she also recognized the trying financial times due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“I wish that we could do more for teachers and staff,” Board President Amy Weir said. “Unfortunately, it’s not a normal year. These are not normal circumstances.”
Several trustees echoed Weir’s desire to give a higher salary increase.
“This is not everything I wished we could do for our staff,” Trustee Mason Moses said. “I think we all wish we could give more of a raise. But I understand we’ve got to make some tough decisions that not everybody is going to be happy with.”
View the 2020-21 compensation plan below.