3% Raise For All Georgia's Teachers Next Fall

Teachers across Georgia should expect to get at least an additional 3% bump in pay starting next school year.

Governor Nathan Deal

Governor Deal’s 2016 State of the State Address
Gov Deal said, “I have shown our appreciation for our teachers by making public education a priority, and we will do so again this year by appropriating an additional $300 million for k-12 education, which is more than is required to give teachers a three percent pay raise.”
This will be the third bump in pay DeKalb teachers should see in a 12 month period.  At the beginning of the 2015-16 school year, teachers received a 3%-4% pay raise in the 4-3-2 plan.  Just recently the district rolled out a mid year teacher schedule adjustment where teachers received an increase of up to $14,000 to make their salary competitive with other metro Atlanta school districts.  And now teachers can expect an additional 3% starting next year if the school district passes along the additional funding meant for teachers the state will send to each school district.
[Update 1/15/16 ]
Question:  Does the school district actually have an option whether or not to pass this additional funding along to teachers?
Answer: It does not look like it will be mandated.  The Governor did, however, allude to repercussions in the flexibility given to the spending by districts that don’t pass the money along to teachers.  Every year the district gets Class Size Flexibility and 65% Rule flexibility waivers.  This year DeKalb Schools will also be applying to become a Strategic Waiver School System (SWSS).  It would seem those waivers could be in jeopardy if the school district doesn’t comply with the Governor’s wishes.
Governor Deal said:

“We will distribute this money to your local school system under the existing QBE formula, but it is our intention that your local school system pass the three percent pay raise along to you. If that does not happen, it will make it more difficult next year for the state to grant local systems more flexibility in the expenditure of state education dollars, as recommended by the Education Reform Commission.
We have given local school systems large increases in funding for the past three years and given them the flexibility to decide how to spend it. Based on a survey by the State Department of Education, 94 percent of school systems used those funds to reduce or eliminate furlough days. With the additional funding this year, furloughs should be a thing of the past and teachers should receive that three percent pay raise. “

9 responses to “3% Raise For All Georgia's Teachers Next Fall

  1. This is great news!

  2. Stan:
    Per your last sentence, does the school district actually have an option whether or not to pass this additional funding along to teachers? I can understand some local flexibility in how it is distributed, but I would expect it to be mandated to go to teachers. I hope the state structures it that way.

  3. David,
    It looks like the Governor is going to pass it down with no official mandates. However, he alluded to repercussions if the money was not passed down to the teachers. Good question … I’ll amend the post with the Governor’s words.

  4. I heard that this will be one-time outlay from the state government, not an adjustment to the state salary schedule. Does that mean that teachers can expect a 3% pay increase this year and then a 3% decrease the following year if the funding isn’t renewed?

  5. one-time outlay from the state – This additional appropriation will not be reflected in the state salary schedule for teachers. The QBE formula for state funding the school districts doesn’t reflect state revenues, which is one of the many reasons it’s getting overhauled. It will be challenging for the state to appropriate less money the following year unless there is a downturn in the economy. The school districts would in turn have a hard time rolling back teacher raises.
    one-time pay from the school district – That being said, the school district could couch this additional money as a one time “signing bonus” thereby raising teacher’s earned annual income but not their salaries.

  6. Thanks, Stan.
    Just seems like passing these funds directly to the teachers, as intended, would be a simple way to get closer to the 65% classroom spending requirement. Conversely, not giving the funds to the teachers and spending it elsewhere would move us farther from the 65% goal. Seems like a no-brainer to me, but then, I’m just a parent/taxpayer.

  7. I sincerely hope that this funding is specifically directed toward teachers. In Dekalb County, our teachers have been treated with little respect over the past five years and I am delighted to see a change in the Human Resources Department starting at the top – I just hope that works its way down to those who caused such damage. I commend Dr. Green for his courage, but he needs to get these failed administrators off the payroll and not in “created” positions. I’m pleased to see that Dr. Green has a real PhD from a reputable university – that stands in stark contrast to those administrators who have been milking taxpayer funds with degrees from colleges that are little more than “face” colleges that have low standards and require little in the way of work and testing. Stan, do you know if Tekisha Ward-Smith and Kathy Howe are still on the payroll?

  8. 1st Year Teacher in Dekalb

    Fri 1/22/2016 1:43 PM

    To: All DCSD Employees
    From: Dr. R. Stephen Green
    Subject: School Closure Times
    Date: 22 January 2016
    Due to the potential threat for inclement weather this afternoon and evening, all 10- and 11-month schoolhouse employees are authorized to leave their sites using the schedule below. Classified non-exempt staff will receive pay for the full work day. All exempt staff will receive pay for the full day.
    All 12-month schoolhouse employees should remain on site until students are safely home, and all 10- and 11-month staff members have departed. All central office staff will be released at 3:15 PM.
    Elementary Schools – 1:00 PM
    High Schools – 2:15 PM
    Middle Schools – 3:15 PM

  9. Update – At the Committee of the Whole yesterday, Dr. Bell talked about some of the highlights of the upcoming budget. They are considering a 3% raise for all non certificated employees, a retention bonus for existing certificated employees and a signing bonus for new certificated employees. I reminded Dr. Bell of the extra appropriations expected from the state. He replied the new budget will take into account that money.