Pearland ISD will award its staffers a 2% pay increase for the 2021-22 school year—half as much of a raise as they were given the year prior.

All employees will receive the 2% increase with the addition of some adjustments for market equity after the board of trustees voted to approve the $3.06 million compensation package at its May 18 workshop. Less than $250,000 of the total will go to equity adjustments.

The district is facing a difficult funding year, Superintendent John Kelly and several trustees said at the workshop, but they expressed gratitude at being able to give a raise at all and wanted to ensure teachers knew how appreciated they were before leaving for the summer.

“With the uncertainties of our lovely legislature and all of the other things that are going on, it’s not for lack of advocacy,” trustee Rebecca Decker said, referring to both legislative advocacy and the budget discussions which took place during board workshops. “Although I wish we could give more, I’m glad we can give something.”

Aside from the general increase and equity adjustments, beginning teacher salaries have increased from $58,100 to $59,000, and the salary midpoint for teachers and librarians was moved from $62,500 to $63,500, according to the workshop agenda item information sheet.

Last year, PISD gave its employees a 4% general pay increase and a $300 annual increase to benefits along with some adjustments for pay equity. These changes increased the district’s placement in teacher salary to at or above market in years 0-15 and “allowed for more creative pay system changes in other areas,” per the information sheet.

These latest approved adjustments will bring employees who fall below their pay range back within market range through individual calculations, per the information sheet. The adjustments will likely be just enough to ensure equity, trustee Kristofer Schoeffler added.

"We understand that this is basically just floating you until next year," he said. "Hopefully it helps."

The board reserves the right to re-address compensation in late fall, which could bring a mid-year supplemental pay for employees depending on the district’s projected fund balance, per the information sheet.

Kelly echoed the sentiments of trustees in that he wished a higher raise could be given, but this does not mean teachers are not valued in PISD.

“We don't produce world class schools without these teachers,” he said.