The Montgomery County School Board voted on the budget and a policy change.
School Board members receive a $2,400.00 raise, lifting their salaries to $7,200 a year by unanimous vote.
Superintendent Mark Miear explained that state code requires any salary increase approval must occur when three district seats are up for election. A salary increase would go in effect after the elections and on January 1, 2020.
Mark Cherbaka of District G and Marti Graham of District E are seeking reelection this November and District F seat will be left open as Connie Froggatt has decided to not to run again.
“Currently school members get paid $4,800,” Froggatt said, “There are probably some people out there who think “Does the school board deserve a raise?” unfortunately, on this salary, it is somewhat cost-prohibitive do to this job or to run for this office. Other school district board members around us make 2-3 times more and we put in a lot of hours.”
“It has been 14 years since the last pay increase,” Jamie Bond, District D representative pointed out.
Meanwhile, the MCPS operating budget is now balanced with an additional $3.8 million dollars in local funds according to Miear.
The 2019-2020 school budget will fund 19 new positions and allow for salary increases for MCPS staff, especially school nurses.
Health insurance rates will stay the same. The operating budget passed with unanimous vote.
“This budget meets the needs and goals of our school system,” Miear said.
The board also approved the new teacher pay plan.
Miear said, “MCPS was ranked number 7 out 8 surrounding school divisions with starting pay just above Giles County. We have fought to increase and get that right and be competitive. We are now ranked number four in all levels of pay. Starting teacher pay could make us tied for number 2 or 3. We are competitive now.”
The Nutrition Budget will not require any price increase for school breakfast and lunch fees.
The MCPS Nutrition program strives to be self-sustaining and the board voted unanimous to approve a 2019-2020 operating budget for the MCPS School Nutrition Program.