The board was introduced to the district’s Coronavirus Assistance and Recognition of Effort Stipend, or FISD C.A.R.E.S., at a May 13 special meeting.
The stipend is an effort to provide assistance to FISD employees for using their personal equipment and supplies for remote work during COVID-19 closures, said district chief financial officer Kimberly Smith, and to recognize staff efforts during the coronavirus response and transition into eLearning.
Smith said the recommended payment will be 1.5% of base wages. To be eligible, recipients must have been employed in a budgeted, allocated position with FISD as of March 1 and remain employed through May 28, she said.
If approved by the board June 8, recipients would be paid their stipend in July with their last paycheck for the contract year, Smith said.
The FISD C.A.R.E.S. incentive will cost around $5.75 million, Smith said, and will be paid out of the district’s anticipated surplus for this year.
Board President Chad Rudy said the stipend will be beneficial to staff—especially teachers—who went the extra mile during eLearning and school closures.
“I think this is really significant with what our teachers and staff have experienced over the last few months,” Rudy said during the meeting. “The district has benefited from the closures from a budget standpoint with reducing utilities and other aspects of it. So this is, to me, a great opportunity to give back.”