Montgomery ISD teachers will receive a $650 annual salary raise in the upcoming school year as the district is expected to face an estimated $4.3 million shortfall for the fiscal year 2024-25 budget.

What’s happening

On May 7, MISD trustees approved the teacher raises as well as a 1% salary increase—"from the midpoint of their pay grade”—for all other employees, according to a May 9 email from a district spokesperson.

“I am not naïve to think this compensation increase provides as significant of an impact as many were hoping,” Superintendent Mark Ruffin said via email. “I do hope it is understood that in the face of a deficit budget, our board made the decision to stand in our corner and continue to support our people. I will remain committed to doing all that is possible to provide the resources necessary to ensure a premier work experience for our students and community.”

Last June, MISD approved a balanced budget with $1,300 raises for teachers, Community Impact previously reported.

Current situation

On May 7, trustees and district leaders also discussed preliminary numbers for the FY 2024-25 budget, including $4.3 million in expected increases to expenditures—not including the roughly $660,000 cost of employee raises. Meanwhile, the district is also expected to see an increase of about 2% in average daily attendance and therefore about $855,000 more in funding, according to Ruffin’s May 7 presentation.

“We have to have something in the background that we're saying is the long-term fix, because ... three years from now, if we continue at this path, ... we're gonna be defunct,” trustee Eddie Winn said.

Dig deeper

According to Ruffin’s presentation, the FY 2024-25 budget is also expected to include:
  • $780,000 in added expenses for the opening of Creekside Elementary
  • $1 million in increased expenses for new special education positions
  • $724,000 in cuts to expenditures, including the elimination of five elementary campus positions, trimming the substitute budget and trimming transportation expenditures
  • $592,000 in projected revenue increases compared to FY 2023-24, including increased special education, child nutrition, and career and technical education funding
MISD trustees have not yet approved the FY 2024-25 budget and typically approve annual budgets in June.

The context

MISD’s “budget challenges” are a result of the lack of funding increases made for public schools during the 88th legislative session, according to the district's May 9 email.

Public school leaders across the state called for an increase in public school funding ahead of the 88th legislative session in January 2023, Community Impact previously reported. The Texas Legislature wrapped up its fourth special session Dec. 5 without passing legislation that would provide raises for public school teachers and more money for school safety.

Also of note

At the meeting, trustees also authorized district leaders to order an efficiency audit in relation to a potential voter-approval tax rate election, or VATRE, ballot initiative that would be held in November if called.