2019 Salary Schedules And Comparison

DeKalb Schools will implement a new salary schedule starting January 1. It will be discussed and voted on by the board on January 7th in time for January 15th checks.

DeKalb Teachers

DeKalb Schools Policy GCA says, “The compensation program shall have a comprehensive review at least every five years.” In Nov 2017, in accordance with Policy GCA, Management Advisory Group International (MAG), was engaged to perform a Compensation and Classification (Comp & Class) study.


Salary Schedule & Comparison

Here are the new teacher and counselor salary schedules and how they compare to the other Metro Atlanta school districts.

T4 = Bachelors
T5 = Masters
T6 = Specialist
T7 = Doctorate

Proposed Teacher Salary Comparison FY19
Proposed Counselor Salary Comparison FY19
Proposed Salary Schedule – ALL EMPLOYEES

T4 = Bachelors

T5 = Masters

174 responses to “2019 Salary Schedules And Comparison

  1. Patty Williams

    Why aren’t School Psychologists included with the counselor/Ot/Pt/Slp pay schedule? Our workload and requirements are just as stringent. Does the board know what we do? To be hired, we have to have a master’s plus 30. We all have at least 3 schools. Our futies are vast.

  2. Patty, I’ve included the proposed Salary Schedule for ALL EMPLOYEES. I believe the job title for a school pyschologist is “Coordinator III, School Psychologist”. I believe the code is 130. The old salary range for a school psychologist was $90K to $119K. The new salary range for a school psychologist will be $83K to $125K.

  3. Does this mean that those of us with over 30 years will receive a pay cut? My current salary is $2100 more than the “maximum salary” for a T5.

  4. Paycut, I thought I read somewhere that nobody’s salary will go down. I’m can’t find where I saw that. The new Maximum salary for a T-5 in DeKalb is still more than the maximum salary for a T-5 in any other metro Atlanta school district … if I’m reading it correctly.

  5. You don’t address that a counselor with 4 years of experience in Gwinnett is making $59,000 whereas in Dekalb that counselor makes $55,000. The spreadsheet is misleading. Dekalb does not give steps at the beginning that other counties do, this we remain underpaid in comparison

  6. Frustrated, I’m not following you. Are you referring to a T5, T6 or T7 Counselor? I don’t know what you mean by “give steps”. It looks like counselors in DeKalb are paid relatively average compared to other school districts. –Stan

  7. It was voted to appove Phase 1/2 back on 6/26. Why are they voting to appove it again? I so confused on this.

  8. OK. I’ve included the proposed Salary Schedule for ALL EMPLOYEES.

    Confused,
    The money for Phase II was appropriated, but the actual salary schedules were not approved.

  9. Stan,

    Is this an early April Fool’s Joke? The salary schedule (never officially called a draft when first published) indicated that I would be receiving a salary $5,000 more than the one you’ve shared.

    What happened?

    Can you find out what the school district did to determine the originally proposed schedule and this new one that looks so similar to our existing pay? Why did it change the +30 to the T6 and T7 degrees? Where is all the money that was budgeted for this proposed schedule now going?

    Even in the dysfunctional, unprofessional world of Dekalb this is wrong.

  10. DeKalbTeacher, Which salary schedule and step are you referring to? If you’re not getting $5K more like you expected, how much more will you be making as indicated by the proposed chart? What do you mean when you said “Why did it change the +30 to the T6 and T7 degrees?” … please expound. –Stan

  11. Thanks for keeping us informed Stan!

  12. This is very different from what was published last summer with the draft. Where did that draft proposal come from and how did the numbers change so significantly?

  13. Intrigued, MAG did the Comp & Class study. They came up with a number of recommendations including salary schedules. The administration tweaked it and are now making this recommendation to the board. I don’t know what the process was that led from the original proposed schedule to this proposed schedule. –Stan

  14. Stan, the current pay scale, ( https://www.dekalbschoolsga.org/hcm/files/2018/10/teacher-salary-schedule.pdf ) shows a maximum salary of $81,761.37 for a t5 and 33+ years. The proposed schedule stops at 29 years and a maximum salary of $79,689. If the new schedule is approved, then every teacher with 30 years or more experience will be getting a pay cut.

  15. Hello Paycut. I thought I read in one of my documents somewhere that nobody will receive a paycut even if your schedule goes down. I’m still looking for that. That being said, $79,689 is more than all the other school Metro Atlanta school districts. –Stan

  16. Stan,
    What about the Assistant Principals and School Social Workers? I don’t see where they were included.

  17. Concern … Hmmmmmm … Assistant Princpal is job code 131 … which seems to be missing. What is the job code or title for a social worker? I’ll ask about assistant principals. –Stan

  18. I’m having trouble reading this and differentiating what actual vs state exp vs state step is supposed to mean. What would a third year teacher be making under this proposed plan, for instance? Is it $52,707?

  19. Thank you Stan!
    We seemingly are always forgotten.

  20. Here is where the info about no decrease is posted on your blog
    http://factchecker.stanjester.com/2018/12/8477

    Jilltherapist | December 26, 2018 at 11:15 AM |
    Stan
    Fyi: This is what all employees received on Friday 12/21/18 at my elementary school from our bookkeeper:

    DeKalb County School District (DCSD) has completed its most recent Compensation & Class Study, mandated by Board of Education Policy GCA. Under this policy, the district is required to complete a comprehensive review of its compensation program every five years and implement changes as needed.

    In accordance with this policy, DCSD is once again implementing a step-raise program at all levels. A step-raise program assesses a worker’s ability, education, experience, and overall contribution to the district, and places them on a scale. Where you are placed on such a scale determines your eligibility for future raises.

    If approved by the Board of Education in January 2019, the salaries of DCSD employees are being adjusted to align with the new salary steps. This means many employees will receive an increase in their salary. In addition, ALL district employees—regardless of where they are placed on the salary spectrum—will receive a 2.5 percent pay increase in January 2019.

    No one’s salary will decrease as a result of the Compensation and Class Study.

    View a helpful FAQ and an infographic explaining the steps leading to the adjustment.

    For more information, please contact DCSD Human Capital Management.

  21. Confused, I’m not sure what State Exp or State Step mean. I’m still waiting for a complete explanation from the administration on
    1. How actual experience is calculated
    2. How experience to step is converted

  22. @Stan I’m hoping the steps are based upon years experience and not whatever those worrisome (0,1,2) years are under state exp. If it isn’t, then a third year teacher in Dekalb would be due to receive the exact same same salary as they’re making this year under the current salary schedule which doesn’t seem right.

  23. Stan,

    On July 18, you posted an email from Vinsley that said the phase II salary schedule would have to be approved by the board. Nowhere in that communication did she explain that this phase II salary schedule was one of many-or even just two-proposed salary schedules. Almost five months later and only weeks before our paychecks would change, you posted another email from Vinsley that now referred to this phase II salary schedule as one MAG proposed.

    What happened between July and December?

    The phase II schedule Vinsley gave you used the education descriptions common to other areas of the country. Instead of using T6, which is for a specialist’s degree, it identified MA+30, which is for 30 hours of graduate education after a master’s degree. What happened? Did Dekalb realize it had no way of knowing how many certified employees had these years of education? Why is Dekalb now opting for the T7 designation instead of the MA+30?

    I have no way of knowing how much I’ll be making because you’re the only one communicating any specific information to us. The proposed salary schedule posted in July indicated that I would be receiving more than $5,500 more annually. This new one has me making $1,100, or maybe $2, 200 more, if I’m interpreting the years of experience correctly.

    The phase II salary schedule Vinsley gave you in July also had counselors making considerably more than teachers. This new one puts a counselor with my experience at the same pay. That’s at least $8,000 less.

  24. Region 1 Teacher

    Thank you for posting this, Stan. Thank you for also responding to a million questions from your blog followers. 😉 You have an abundance of patience.

    I am a teacher with a masters degree (T5) and have been serving for 5 years, this is my 6th year teaching . The draft copy indicated my salary would be $58k for the remainder of this year and then $60k next year.. I see that was reduced to $55k for this year and only going to $56k next year.

    I’m a key player in our cluster and a subject matter expert. I get offers for recruitment all the time from other districts. I’ve stayed in the cluster because I absolutely love my students. I was really excited to get that pay increase. Now, it’s just not much to get excited about. It’s unfortunate.. this is really DeKalbs ONE chance to do this right and they are being cheap with their greatest assets – TEACHERS – once again. With all we’ve been through the last two years… extended days, a half-baked “mandatory” curriculum, required 9 page weekly lesson plans & schools with NO resources, it won’t be enough to make me sign with DeKalb next year. I will be applying elsewhere and leaving for a new position in the fall.

    Encourage the board members to make a bigger statement with the step schedules. It has been a long road for teachers the last few years. The best ones have left or are leaving. The draft was a much better step in the right direction. Pay your teachers and you will attract and retain top talent. Don’t chase the coattails of other districts… get ahead of them! Our budget is over $1B, why are we always lagging behind with compensation? Can we not afford it?!

  25. Region 1 Teacher, how much are you expecting your new position to pay?

  26. I have been a loyal DeKalb educator for 29 years and I am appalled that I will not receive another pay increase to supplement the money that DeKalb decided not to pay into teacher’s retirement years ago! That doesn’t seem fair and I feel unappreciated. I am wondering if I need to get my attorney to get my money back since I don’t get any more step increases and my teacher’s retirement is not where it should be. Where is my money that Dekalb stopped paying into teacher’s retirement or where are my steps?

  27. Benita, the TSA case is currently being appealed. The Georgia Supreme Court is deciding whether or not to hear it.

    You make a good point that different school systems have different compensation packages.

  28. Region 1 Teacher

    I am finishing a doctorate degree next year so I’m looking at both the T5 & T7 structures. Under the new step structure, DeKalb still fails to remain competitive with higher-level degrees. Going to another district such as Cobb will give me at least $4-5k more than the new steps. Even in the master’s category, the “lead” DeKalb has is within a few dollars of another district most years. All those districts have to do is sneeze & they beat out DeKalb once again. Nearby districts will prob give a 1-2% standard raise to their employees for next year and we’re back to being in the middle or bottom of the big 6 pack.

    If we’re not going to visit step structures for another 5 years, we shouldn’t still be lagging behind or even this close to other districts in my opinion. The draft was what was needed to remain competitive for more than a year.

  29. MA + 30 represents 30 hours of education not years; EdS.

  30. Peach In the Sun

    I am extremely disappointed with this proposed new pay scale as well. I was looking forward to and expecting DCSS to start paying us on the proposed Draft Scale that was posted by Dr. Gregory a few month ago. It’s as though DeKalb County Schools continues to do a song and dance to keep us all confused. I agree with Region 1 teacher. DeKalb County Schools has all of the potential to be the leading school district in metro Atlanta, but to be honest, it sucks. DeKalb County Schools sucks! Yes, I said it! In the past school year, in my school I have had to deal with a rodent infestation, brown water coming out of the faucet, no heat, stolen and broken equipment that is never replaced, and the list goes on and on. These are horrific conditions, in which, if I was describing them to anyone else, they would think I am describing a school in a third world country. I don’t want to put up with these conditions but I can’t just quit because I have a family to support and it is difficult to get a job. Having the intially proposed pay raise would help to make these third world teaching conditions a little bit more tolerable. I am unsure as to whether or not I will make much more going to a different district, but hopefully the teaching conditions will be more suitable with the basic necessities, like heat, clean water, etc. My son recently expressed a desire to become a teacher, unfortunately, I had to tell him that I won’t support him if that is what he selects as a college major. I think I can speak for myself and several other teachers when I say I believe there will be a mass exodus when it comes to contracts being issued.

  31. Dear Stan, how does this effect paraprofessionals? Will we see and difference in our pay. We work hard as well. Thank you for all you do for Dekalb County.

  32. Additional Retirement Packages – Many school districts have additional retirement packages. DeKalb Schools has a 403(b) 2% Employee Contribution Match. Most other school districts have a 7% matching FICA … otherwise known as Social Security.

  33. KinderPara92, Here is the proposed Salary Schedule for ALL EMPLOYEES. The new salary schedule for ParaPros is Job Grade 107.

  34. The problem with DeKalb’s 2% match is it falls far below other districts’ current matches as you mention. With the economy coming back, many match programs are back as well. Therefore, DeKalb should compensate more in the salary to adjust for this. Central office staff shouldn’t even be getting a pay raise. They are already overpaid and under skilled. Anyone who’s ever dealt with the front office in any capacity knows the vast majority is worthless and unable to maintain even a basic level of professionalism. In addition, as far as the 2% match, you have to be with the district for at least 5 or more years to even it. So, its not a real benefit to new teachers or transferring teachers to DeKalb.

  35. What do other districts have?

  36. Stan, am I reading this right as to this is what we will be making for a total of 190 days worked? If I take roughly half of the current pay schedule with roughly half of the one posted in other blogs for me (T5 with 13 years experience) I come within $60 of what is posted in this thread. It would then make sense that I would be at roughly $69k for 19-20 earning that for a full academic year.

  37. If this new pay/step plan passes without change it is a slap in the face to those who have spent their careers in Dekalb County Schools. Those with a master’s degree and 30+ years are being “paid” for their service to our students with a pay cut. These are the same employees who have weathered the cuts for furlough days during the recession and the loss of the annuity payments in lieu of the COUNTY paying social security. Those who have spent 10-15 years in the system seem to be getting the increase.

  38. What remains to be answered here is… the rough draft was the recommendations of the compensation and classification study. If administration is just going to buck that and “modify” it to be half of what the raise / recommendations were, what was the point of even conducting the study?

    A sham once again.

    We couldve saved ourselves the expense of hiring the agency to review compensation if there was never an intention to listen to said agency on their recommendations.

    Hey Dr. Green – if you want to get some good PR and “I love DCSD” pay the teachers a handsome raise. You’ll see a lot of “love to teach here” sentiments and an authentic “I love DCSD” in our schools. Put DCSD in a position to be a highly attractive school district for new and veteran teachers.

  39. Dr. Bernice Gregory, DeKalb Schools Chief HCM

    sent via email
    Assistant Principals – All job codes are not in sequential order. However, the Assistant Principals are on the Salary Grade 129 on the included salary step schedule. Our Elementary APs work 200 days and the Middle and High School APs work 213 days.

  40. Stan,

    I don’t see School Psychologist on the list. I see Coordinator III, GNETS, but Notpsychologist.

  41. Hello Patty. Dr Gregory said she would update that spreadsheet and put psychologist on the 129 sheet.

  42. Stan,

    Are you able to confirm that the teacher’s with over 30 years of experience will not be subjected to a pay cut?

  43. YOCE E04 current E04 New E05 Current E05 New E06 Current E06 New E07 Current E07 New
    Exp-0 47,735.91 $ 47,736 50,66.44 $ 50,667 55,532.85 $ 55,533 60,834.40 $ 60,835
    Exp-1 47,735.91 $ 48,521 50,66.44 $ 51,687 55,532.85 $ 56,644 60,834.40 $ 62,035
    Exp-2 47,735.91 $ 49,306 50,66.44 $ 52,707 55,532.85 $ 57,755 60,834.40 $ 63,235
    Exp-3 47,735.91 $ 50,091 50,66.44 $ 53,727 55,532.85 $ 58,866 60,834.40 $ 64,435
    Exp-4 47,735.91 $ 50,876 50,66.44 $ 54,747 55,532.85 $ 59,977 60,834.40 $ 65,635
    Exp-5 48,892.80 $ 51,661 51,823.33 $ 55,767 56,689.75 $ 61,088 61,991.30 $ 66,835
    Exp-6 48,892.80 $ 52,446 51,823.33 $ 56,787 56,795.55 $ 62,199 61,991.30 $ 68,035
    Exp-7 48,892.80 $ 53,231 51,823.33 $ 57,807 56,795.55 $ 63,310 61.991.30 $ 69,235
    Exp-8 48,950.66 $ 54,016 51,939.02 $ 58,827 57,104.54 $ 64,421 63,049.24 $ 70,435
    Exp-9 49,484.32 $ 54,801 52,809.44 $ 59,847 59,674.41 $ 65,532 63,294.03 $ 71,635
    Exp-10 49,757.69 $ 55,586 56,754.12 $ 60,867 63,681.84 $ 66,643 70,261.58 $ 72,835
    Exp-11 50,238.39 $ 56,371 57,432.23 $ 61,887 64,796.45 $ 67,754 71,878.32 $ 74,035
    Exp-12 51,745.54 $ 57,156 59,088.18 $ 62,907 66,540.05 $ 68,865 73,422.17 $ 75,235
    Exp-13 52,377.83 $ 57,941 59,529.30 $ 63,927 66,990.64 $ 69,976 73,919.90 $ 76,435
    Exp-14 54,224.07 $ 58,726 61,487.41 $ 64,947 69,107.99 $ 71,087 76,443.58 $ 77,635
    Exp-15 54,815.61 $ 59,511 62,154.50 $ 65,967 69,484.15 $ 72,198 76,862.68 $ 78,835
    Exp-16 56,331.71 $ 60,296 63,872.34 $ 66,987 71,422.87 $ 73,309 79,003.81 $ 80,035
    Exp-17 57,140.42 $ 61,081 64,787.65 $ 68,007 72,335.97 $ 74,420 79,716.48 $ 81,235
    Exp-18 58,388.70 $ 61,866 66,193.61 $ 69,027 73,893.71 $ 75,531 81,454.15 $ 82,435
    Exp-19 59,228.68 $ 62,651 67,145.69 $ 70,047 74,959.42 $ 76,642 82,396.31 $ 83,635
    Exp-20 60,608.67 $ 63,436 68,696.60 $ 71,067 76,676.58 $ 77,753 84,271.84 $ 84,835
    Exp-21 60,737.07 $ 64,221 68,696.60 $ 72,087 76,676.58 $ 78,864 84,271.84 $ 86,035
    Exp-22 62,611.26 $ 65,006 68,728,10 $ 73,107 76,676.58 $ 79,975 84,271.84 $ 87,235
    Exp-23 64,506.86 $ 65,791 70,554.91 $ 74,127 77,366.10 $ 81,086 84,724.93 $ 88,435
    Exp-24 66,442.06 $ 66,576 72,671.55 $ 75,147 79,468.19 $ 82,197 86,914.91 $ 89,635
    Exp-25 67,760.13 $ 67,761 74,898.90 $ 76,167 81,908.89 $ 83,308 89,463.65 $ 90,835
    Exp-26 67,760.13 $ 68,980 77,145.87 $ 77,187 84,366.15 $ 84,419 91,868.91 $ 92,035
    Exp-27 67,760.13 $ 69,765 78,688.11 $ 78,689 86,051.87 $ 86,052 93,711.54 $ 93,712
    Exp-28 69,075.96 $ 70,550 78,688.11 $ 79,869 86,051.87 $ 87,342 93,711.54 $ 95,117
    Exp-29 69,075.96 $ 70,550 78688.11 $ 79,869 86,051.87 $ 87,342 93,711.54 $ 95,117
    Exp-30 69,075.96 $ 70,550 80,232.58 $ 79,869 87,735.34 $ 87,342 95,536.22 $ 95,117
    Exp-31 70,420.95 80,232.58 87,735.34 95,536.22
    Exp-32 70,420.95 80,232.58 87,735.34 95,536.22
    Exp-33 70,420.95 81,761.37 89,421.03 97,376.61

    I took the liberty to create the new proposed salary schedules and placed them next to the current pay scale. In the fist column, I have listed Years of Credited Experience. This is what the county uses. In the proceeding columns I put all the degreee levels and what the current pay scale is for DeKalb. I then used the proceeding column after the specific degree placement and put in the proposed salary schedules for those same degree levels. This is what should have been put on here in a spread sheet to begin with so individuals could see what they are currently making next to what they are subjected to make if the board rubber stamps this new pay scale. As you can see in some cases, teachers will get only a $1.00 raise where as others will receive well over $6,000.00 raise and yet others with higher degrees and maximum years will get a pay reduction. How the board would even think this is a fair disbursement of raises is beyond me. How does DeKalb feel it is only necessary for certain areas of the pay scale be ranked 1st in the entire metro area and yet the majority of the other areas of the pay scale to be 2nd, 3rd, 4th and even 5th is still mind-boggling. You are sending the wrong message to nearly your entire population of teachers by approving and disbursing the raises this way. It is unethical and should be voted down entirely. This should be put on hold until a fair disbursement of salaries is populated.

  44. I agree with Tired and In Shock. Yes, DeKalb started matching our 403B contributions a few years ago and I was probably one of the first employees who opened an account when it was re-introduced to the employees. Unfortunately, it’s not even at $20,000 and I have the maximum amount taken out with one year left before I can retire! That’s not a lot of money. With that in mind, many people in this position cannot afford to retire. It is more than disappointing to know that I will not get any more step increases to help offset the money that I lost(and should have been drawing interest) from my retirement when Dekalb stop paying into our retirement accounts. So the message that you’re sending to the “seasoned” veterans of DeKalb with no incentives that you don’t care if we stay or go? I guess Dekalb will continue to “beg” teachers with 1-3 years who quit during the school year to stay or continue to hire less equipped teachers who should have been “retained” in student teaching and have no clue how to teach our kids. When I began my career in this county, DeKalb only hired the best of the best and paid the highest salaries. An advanced degree was required or one had to be enrolled in an advanced degree program. Everybody wanted to work in DeKalb and it was an honor and proud moment to be chosen. Employees felt valued and appreciated with compensation and health care packages to match. We loved coming to work. Unfortunately, no billboards, tee shirts or magazines will get us back to where we once were. So again I ask, where is the compensation for my loss?

  45. This new proposal is disappointing it is not the original phase II proposal in which we would have had a $6,000 raise. Our entire math and science departments will be leaving at the end of the semester. Thanks for the information Stan we are fed up but we won’t complain we are taking action.

  46. Where are Lead Teachers for Special Education placed on the new pay scale?

  47. Hello Core. I’ll push for every penny possible to go towards teacher salaries. How much are you looking for in your salary?

  48. Stan, to answer your question to Core the teacher salaries are in need of a $6000 to $8000 bump to be in line and maybe even just slightly above other districts. DeKalb teachers have shouldered a lot of mistreatment and neglect not faced in other districts. It is well deserved and overdue. As you can see from the comments, many are just fed up.

    Thank you for fighting for teachers! We appreciate you!!

  49. Sunny, are you saying that teacher salaries need to be raised by 10 to 15 percent to be competitive with other districts? Are you comparing salaries or complete compensation?

  50. Salary Ajustments

    I took the liberty to create the new proposed salary schedules and placed them next to the current pay scale. In the fist column, I have listed Years of Credited Experience. This is what the county uses. In the proceeding columns I put all the degreee levels and what the current pay scale is for DeKalb. I then used the proceeding column after the specific degree placement and put in the proposed salary schedules for those same degree levels. This is what should have been put on here in a spread sheet to begin with so individuals could see what they are currently making next to what they are subjected to make if the board rubber stamps this new pay scale. As you can see in some cases, teachers will get only a $1.00 raise where as others will receive well over $6,000.00 raise and yet others with higher degrees and maximum years will get a pay reduction. How the board would even think this is a fair disbursement of raises is beyond me. How does DeKalb feel it is only necessary for certain areas of the pay scale be ranked 1st in the entire metro area and yet the majority of the other areas of the pay scale to be 2nd, 3rd, 4th and even 5th is still mind-boggling. You are sending the wrong message to nearly your entire population of teachers by approving and disbursing the raises this way. It is unethical and should be voted down entirely. This should be put on hold until a fair disbursement of salaries is populated.

  51. Salary Ajustments

    I added a link, to the spread sheet I set up. The above charts did not populate as I wanted. Hopefully this works. This should have your current salaries followed by your proposed updated salaries so everyone can see how much if any of a raise you are receiving.

  52. Is DeKalb Parent correct? Will the county’s most experienced teachers actually receive no increases or a salary reduction? Unless the county is trying to force experienced people into early retirement, this hardly seems reasonable, and is ultimately harmful to kids.

  53. Stan, total compensation. We have to remember that DeKalb has been among the lowest in the metro with compensation. a 10% raise may seem like a lot but at least 6-7% is what is needed (and already shown/given on this new scale provided) to bring us in line with Cobb, Gwinnett, APS as much as possible. There are still deficits.

    The extra 3-4% would allow employees to recapture a lot of lost income from employees staying with DeKalb over the last 5 years. It can also serve as a buffer for other districts. As soon as this is adopted, other counties will likely offer this amount in a raise (3%) to follow suit. As we know, all the districts are competing for teachers and get into a contest with each other when a restructure or raise is given.

    The board should adopt the phase 2 plan. This recalculation seems to only favor new/incoming teachers (that don’t add a lot of initial value) to the detriment of mid-level to seasoned educators with higher degrees that are often responsible for training/mentoring these new teachers, have sacrificed over the years to remain loyal to DCSD, and have many additional responsibilities in the school house (school reps, dept chairs, gifted liaisons, advisory committees, PBIS leaders, PTA, testing liaisons, TSS, etc.)

  54. What are the details of the compensation packages at Cobb, Gwinnett and APS?

  55. Thank you Concerned parent for taking the initiative to post the true comparisons. Whomever suggested this salary scale should be ashamed. If board members allow this salary schedule to be voted in without a thorough examination of the compensation package without every valuable school based employee from 1 year to infinity years of teaching are included, then they are signing away valuable, experienced employees who can’t afford to stay in this district. Yes, the beginning salaries will attract entry level employees but as they matriculate through the years, if they decide to stay after 3 years or are forced to stay because they are horrible teachers and can’t find a job anywhere else, there is no benefit to remaining in DeKalb. Additionally, EXPERIENCED, Desirable and true HIGHLY QUALIFIED teachers, counselors, psychologists, social workers will not seek employment with DeKalb because the salary scale is not competitive for experienced educators and seemingly decreases over time, will receive less contributions towards retirement and no incentives. Palace employees aren’t really that concerned because they already make 6 figures but what about those of us who are cursed out by parents and students daily, kicked and hit while attempting to instruct students and raise scores, work and live in this county where we our salaries are declining but taxes for our homes are increasing and now we can’t even afford to retire? I would suggest going back to the drawing board and making incentives for ALL school based employees to stay otherwise, you will see a mad exit of great teachers who make a difference teaching students with years of experience exchanged for new, warm bodies in a position that don’t know how to teach kids, manage kids, or implement behavior modification strategies that will allow teachers to teach and kids to learn.

  56. Gwinnett offers the GRS package that adds at least 5% to the total comp package in lieu of a social security contribution. DeKalb doesn’t contribute to SS either and only offers a 2% IF you’re there for 5 continuous years. I’ve worked for DeKalb for 9 years but don’t qualify bc I took ONE year off to raise my child.

    Gwinnett & Cobb offer much higher steps to higher degree employees. They also offer much less combat in the classroom and a culture of teacher support but that is a separate issue.

  57. Higher Salary – I don’t see how “higher steps” makes a difference. DeKalb Schools will have a higher salary from start to finish than Cobb and Gwinnett.

    Additional Retirement – In addition to TRS, it looks like DeKalb Schools just needs to step up the additional retirement plan … whether it’s 403b or something else.

  58. I feel all this is here-say until we see it in print. When are we to get the new salary schedule email? I thought it was supposed to be sent to the employees in December

  59. Resubmitted response
    Deja Vu | July 16, 2018 at 5:29 PM |
    A few years back a work compensation study was also done. The results were published and teachers as well as other employees went into a frenzied delight of anticipated monetary windfalls. That delight was quickly turned to stark reality, there would be no windfall. An explanation that eludes me was given, no matter, no windfall. Professionals deserve the professional minimal courtesy of being informed of their salaries; which they earn.
    Hate to say I told you so, but….
    Stan, Thank-you so much for keeping the teachers informed as well as advocating for us.

  60. Good question Injustsaying! When do the new 2019 pay plans arrive?

  61. I’m not sure you completely understand. It is not just the retirement package that concerns us. A salary cut is not appropriate nor is this scale. An across the board increase would be more equitable. Yes, people are concerned about the loss of the annuity but, many more are upset at all the targeting on getting new people in the system at the expense of those who have dedicated their careers to this county.

  62. Salary Cut – No matter what happens, our most experienced T5 teachers will still have the highest salaries in the metro area. It’s undetermined if anybody will get a salary cut. An elementary school bookkeeper sent out an email about the Comp and Class which included, “No one’s salary will decrease as a result of the Compensation and Class Study.”

    Targeting – Valid critique.

    Additional Retirement – I think increasing the 2% 403b matching would be an equitable and valuable way to improve DeKalb Schools’ compensation package. Many other school districts have 7.5% matching FICA (aka Social Security).

  63. Dear Stan
    I also want to thank you for trying to share all of this information with everyone. I wish that our district leadership should do the same. HR, the Superintendent’s Office someone, should clearly and honestly explain what this is going to mean. People are concerned not only about the right now, but also in the future.
    When a previous superintendent was in DeKalb, the work schedule of some jobs changed. For instance, a counselor went from a nine hour day to an eight hour day. I think there were also some changes in the Lead Teacher and Social Worker schedule. I think that some people still remember this. This also eventually impacted their pay.
    There was an interesting article in the paper about issues that DeKalb has had in hiring.
    https://www.ajc.com/news/schools/?icmp=nav
    How this compensation and salary issue is handled could go a long way in helping staff feel more confident in the ability of our system to do the right thing.
    Again, thank you for all that you do.
    Happy New Year to everyone.

  64. Hi, Stan,

    Thanks for keeping us informed. I still haven’t received an answer as to why school psychologists are not included on the same scale as school
    Counselors, ots, slps, and pts. To be hired, we have to have a master’s plus 30. We also have THREE schools we have to cover-more than many slps-definitely more than the counselors. Our responsibilities are vast. Testing and writing reports isn’t the only thing we do. The board members should look at our calendars and see what all we do. Our duties include anything from crisis situations at schools to counseling students to participating in sst, 504, manifestation, and eligibility meetings to name a few. This is in addition to testing students for special ed and writing the reports. So, once again, why aren’t we included in the counselors, etc. Pay schedule?

  65. Stan Jester | December 31, 2018 at 12:17 PM |
    Higher Salary – I don’t see how “higher steps” makes a difference. DeKalb Schools will have a higher salary from start to finish than Cobb and Gwinnett.

    With all due respect Mr. Jester, DeKalb will not have the highest pay top to bottom above Cobb and Gwinnett. Is this not the “Just the Facts, Ma’ am” Blog? If so we need to state facts and not just assume facts especially since we have this information at our disposal. To clarify this mis-statement, DeKalb will pay more than Cobb and Gwinnett in the entire T-4 scale. In the T-5 scale DeKalb is higher than all of Gwinnett but Cobb is higher than DeKalb in step 9,11,13,15,17,19 & 21. In the T-6 scale, Cobb out pays DeKalb steps 7-23. Gwinnett out pays Dekalb steps 23-26. In the T-7 scale Cobb out pays DeKalb steps 6-24. Gwinnett out pays DeKalb steps 14-29.

    With this being said, what the focus should have been with this increase is to focus on catching up all areas that are lagging behind and the ones that are ahead leave alone. With this focus also introduce a step structure in the process. The middle and higher degrees have always carried the brunt of pay cuts the last 12 years and DeKalb lost a ton of teachers in the middle of the scale pertaining to higher level of degrees. Even through the recession I recall the entry level and top level instructors being paid relatively well compared to surrounding counties. The middle got hit very hard and fell below state recommended salaries meaning instructors were not being paid what the state mandated they be paid. The county had to add a stipend to those instructors checks each pay period to bring them up to the state minimal scale to be in compliance. The middle was not getting a local supplement at all. The top and bottom of the scale was getting their state required minimum salaries and a local supplement sometimes as high as an additional 9,000 dollars. The last major pay increase that was put in to place to catch the salaries up I believe was in January , 2015 and the middle was so far behind with no local supplements they received larger percentages just to be competitive with other counties and this is where DeKalb began to hemorrhaging instructors astronomically. Instructors have to understand you receive two salaries per say. The first salary is the minimum the state says your district must pay you and that is typically the bulk of your salary. Refer to the state pay scale for minimums. The district then pays a local supplemental salary on top of the state minimum at times to make their district more appealing and to attract instructors to their county. To find out how much your local supplement is from your district just subtract the state minimum requirements on the state pay scale from your salary step the district gives you and you have your local supplement your district offers you. The local supplement will differ for each step and degree level. To my point, the middle of the pay scale typically between steps about 9-20 on each level is paid the least amount of local supplement by the district and has did so for years.

    Again no disrespect to you Mr. Jester, you do a fine job and we as community do appreciate your efforts.

  66. Region 1 Teacher

    GREAT points DeKalb Parent! Thank you for the thorough analysis.

    I would also add to your points that most teachers are not on the T-4 scale. (This is the ONLY education level that the new structure actually benefits.) Most are T-5 from my experience, or higher. Its hard to find a quality educator with just a bachelors….

    Stan, Region 1 for the win if you can get the retirement contribution to 7.5% 😉 Now that would possibly level the playing field when coupled with these new structures.

  67. How do you know what step you will be on if your non teacher? I fall in the 113 scale.

  68. Lakeside Teacher

    As someone at the top of the T5 schedule it looks as if I’m in for a pay reduction.

  69. Hello Lakeside Teacher – I’m right there with you. The young teachers are getting a pay raise and us “older”ones, a pay cut. Almost sounds like age discrimination …

  70. It’s disconcerting and demoralizing to see the significant difference in the pay scales (for some of us) that were released by Dr. Bernice Gregory in the blog on July 16, 2018, Phase II (Draft) DCSD Teacher Pay Schedule 2018-2019 at https://drive.google.com/file/d/107wdkY8w1AG2b5rYGzwug1ABQXUdO4qr/view
    and the “Proposed Teacher Salary Comparison” that appeared in the blog on December 29, 2018.

    I have a Master’s and am at approximately Step 24. In the Phase II (Draft) from July 16, the salary with a Master’s at Step 24 is $81,308. In the “Proposed Teacher Salary Comparison” from December 29 a Master’s at Step 24 shows a salary of $75,147.

  71. The true view in all honesty does indicate a larger pay step in the Draft II document versus the one you just displayed in December 2018 is different. The draft gave many of the teachers a reason to smile, however the new one puts us in the same bewilderment.

    Why is there a notion that the more experienced teachers are afraid to step? Paying more to attract new teachers instead of more to keep is pretty offending. Many of us stayed when the district because of good faith. However, it does not seem as if were are being appreciated for staying with the organization.

  72. Step 24 in the July file represented actual experience greater than 30 years. That was my understanding at least. To compare to Step 24 in the new proposal is comparing apples and oranges. It does seem that the only category that DeKalb did well on in 2016 (see Stan’s previous post) was T-5’s with 30+ years of experience. But outside of that group, which will remain the one of the highest paid in the region (and the state?), its hard for me to imagine that anyone else would get a cut. Regardless, these salaries are dramatically more competitive than the 2016 file. It was just a bunch of 5th and 6th rankings, compared to this being a lot of 1s and 2s. Not sure why the bulk of teachers wouldn’t find these salaries competitive.

  73. Dekalb Taxpayer

    Hi Stan! Thanks so much for keeping everyone informed. Also thanks to Dekalb Parent for clarifying the salary scale/structure. A couple of points/questions:
    1. The teacher salary schedule that is currently being proposed is vastly different than the one proposed by the county several months ago (i.e. Step 19 Master’s degree is now $70,047 rather than $74, 879.00). Why did this happen? Is there a highly qualified teacher in every classroom in Dekalb?
    2. It does appear that veteran teachers are getting penalized (it looks like years of the pay scale have been eliminated). Why?
    3. I have never understood how school systems were allowed to not participate in SS and not be required to provide anything in lieu of this. Dekalb should at the very least be required to contribute at least 4% into a retirement plan (they would still come out ahead financially speaking compared to other districts and any other company in the United States who pays into SS).
    4. Regarding OT/PT/Speech salary schedule-I can say from experience that these folks are well educated and are required to complete a lot of schooling. There are only 3 OT programs in the state of GA (one program is brand new). PTs must now have a clinical doctorate to practice (others have been grandfathered in). I would bet that Dekalb can’t find therapists to directly employ and has to contract therapists. The minimum to be an OT/Speech therapist is a master’s degree and this is in the process of changing (at least for OT). They are all also required to complete many clinical rotations. This is all minimum requirements for these disciplines.
    Thanks again for all you do!!

  74. Hello DeKalb Taxpayer.
    1. I asked the administration earlier this week how we got from one schedule to the next. I’ll let you know what they say. “Highly Qualified Teacher” is somewhat subjective. We do not have a highly qualified teacher in every classroom.
    2. I don’t think veteran teachers are being punished. All 98% of the steps are getting raises. It is a fair critique that DeKalb Schools seems to be trying to attract less experienced teachers.
    3. A number of entities who had other defined benefit plans were given the ability to opt out of Social Security. I think DeKalb Schools should match 403b at least up to 4%. That was, however, not a requirement to withdrawal from Social Security.
    4. Noted. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts on this.

  75. Thanks for the focus, DeKalb Taxpayer.

    1. Here’s hoping that administrators reply to you. Teachers aren’t always so fortunate.

    2. If an experienced teacher is getting a pay cut on the new scale, I don’t know how that could be viewed in any positive way. Whether examining a football team or a school faculty, veterans form the backbone of the organization. Cutting the pay of DeKalb’s most experienced classroom teachers is insulting, and the worst step taken since the good times we had under Crawford Lewis (who famously promised to restore the full TSA. We know how that went.)

    3. Any effort to increase DeKalb’s contribution to retirement would be a wonderful thing. As a veteran teacher I have seen the benefit of those contributions even though the county stopped significant payments a decade ago. The 2% matching currently available is better than nothing, but given that new teachers don’t even get a chance for that until they’ve been around 5 years makes DeKalb a less attractive option to new instructors. Sometimes I think the main attraction to work in DeKalb is location, as other features are lacking.

    4. Amen to speech/OT. They have a lot to do to get certified and they earn it.

  76. escapee from Dekalb

    Please remember that not all of the administration is the bloated ne’er do wells at county office, they are the people responsible for the care and maintenance of your buses, vehicles, school houses, etc…they have suffered along with you for years in hopes that their retirement would be fixed, their salaries would be corrected and that they too want to work at a place that respects all they do to keep the school house doors open and ready to serve the children of Dekalb. They deserve an equitable pay schedule and a matching retirement- in fact- they almost need combat pay for all they have to deal with on a daily basis from within this sytsem.

  77. With you there, escapee!

  78. Region III Teacher

    After comparing the draft to the proposed one, I too will add that this is unfair to the veteran teachers. This new proposal is a slap in our faces. No slight to the new teachers, but we veterans serve as their mentors (PRIDE), department chairs, etc. How are you going to justify paying us LESS?!!! How are can you justify implementing a PAY CUT ?!!! How do you expect to keep teachers?!!! I see an exodus of veteran teachers leaving. Way to go DCSD!!!!

  79. I’ve seen an email that said nobody will get a pay cut.

  80. Hello,

    Thanks for taking sharing all of this information. I noticed that the T5 scale pay difference between counselor/OT/speech scale and teacher scale is about 1000 difference while there is no difference in pay on the T6 and T7 scales. In the drafts from the summer the difference was about 5000 across all degree levels between the counselor scale and teacher scale. Do you know why this change was made and why there is no difference in pay between teachers and counselors at the specialist and doctorate levels?

  81. I think we won’t really know where we stand until we get emails from HCM. Thanks, Stan for giving us a heads up.

  82. Dr. Bernice Gregory, DeKalb Schools Chief HCM

    sent via email

    Question: A number of school districts have 7.5% matching FICA (as it were). Can we raise our matching 403b up from 2% to help compete?

    Answer: I will defer the question to raise the 403b match to Dr. Bell to determine the financial impact for full board consideration.

    Question: How did we get from the original Phase II Teacher Pay Schedule recommendation to this final one? The final one is lower.

    Answer: The first Phase II Teacher Pay Schedule that we were given from MAG was a draft and it was vetted to determine alignment with our current teacher pay structure. With the amount of money that had been allocated for the Compensation and Class implementation, we would have been grossly over budget to fund it at the scale that was given as an exemplar. As with any salary step implementation, there is a vetting of salary scales for reconciliation and alignment to the current pay structure. With the reconciliation of the salary steps, we were able to allocate salary increases at each step and front load the salary to assist with retention and recruitment of candidates. Additionally, we sought to design our salary schedule in line with APS and Gwinnett, which provides a salary increase every year from 0 to 30 with no pauses or plateaus. Currently, the other districts outside of APS and Gwinnett freeze the salary schedules for 2 to 5 years along the life of the salary schedule.

    Question: For teachers, is there any documentation on how to calculate years of experience?

    Answer: An FAQ’s document has been created to staff with the Comp & Class roll-out, we will ensure that a question is added to this document on how to calculate years of experience for teachers to align with the steps on the salary scale. For example, if a teacher has 12 years of verified teaching experience, then the teacher will be emplaced on the scale on step 12. If a teacher has 14 years of verified teaching experience, then the teacher will be emplaced on the scale on step 14, and so on.

  83. Which column should a teacher use to determine their step? There are 2 state columns and one actual experience column. Please advise if you know. Thank you – sorry I don’t understand it.
    Teacher in Dekalb

  84. I believe we are supposed to use “Actual Exp”. I’m not sure what State Exp or State Step is.

  85. I would have liked to have seen Dr. Gregory answer the question as to why there is such emphasis on front loading the salary to attract new teachers at the detriment of those who have served our students for 25+ years. These are the people who have seen the TSA disappear, the furlough days, salary freezes, and extended days. Giving matching funds is nice, but minimal compared to the TSA we once enjoyed. Those of us at the top of the scale want to feel appreciated for the service we have provided. I realize that my placement on the T5 scale shows a pay cut. Dekalb has stated that there will be no pay cuts. How can they show this salary and say there will be no pay cuts? If there will be no pay cuts with the promised 2.5% raise where is the transparency? All T5 teachers with 30+ years will be paid at a rate higher than the actual scale. I don’t get it?? I know it is getting late in my career to see a 403B match (no matter the percentage) make much of a difference in my retirement package. I for one would like to see a true raise across the board. Dekalb, I beg you to appreciate your veteran teachers.

  86. Dekalb Taxpayer

    Thanks again Stan for reaching out to Dekalb school system for some answers and clarification. So if I understand correctly, the professional organization Dekalb hired to update salary schedules recommended Phase II but Dekalb is deciding not to implement it. Why did Dekalb even publish the Phase II salary schedule? Do they have the finances to implement Phase II?

    Regarding highly qualified teachers: I realize this is subjective, but is Dekalb allowed to hire teachers who are not teachers? For example, would a math teacher not have a degree to teach math? Is this allowed in Ga?

  87. “With the reconciliation of the salary steps, we were able to allocate salary increases at each step and front load the salary to assist with retention and recruitment of candidates. ”

    I feel that Dr. Gregory addressed the emphasis on front-loading.

  88. escapee from Dekalb

    I would like to see that the administrative positions at county office the Superintendents, etc… if they get what was on the first draft– I find it interesting that their pay never seems to go down, they add high paying positions, and the workers just keep getting shafted. One day they will look around and no one will know how to do anything, because the ones who knew LEFT.

  89. Dunwoody Diva

    Dekalb County Schools is a huge impersonal entity.
    Their bottom line is money.
    Get new teachers in for several years at their “strong” introductory salary. Most will probably leave after 3 years and the county will start that hiring process all over again.
    There is no sense of concern/gratitude towards veteran employees. I would call it almost a sense of passive/aggressive anger. WE are costing THEM “a lot” of money due to our salaries being higher.
    Honestly they wouldn’t blink an eye if veteran teachers left in droves.
    You have to so what is right for you, your family and your long term financial situation. Dekalb will not bend/change for you:(

  90. Social butterfly

    What schedule is the social worker on?

  91. Not totally related to the new and improved salary scale, but there seems to be an increase in non-teaching staff and paraprofessionals in both the county office and in the schools. Lots of savings to be had there if we focused our money where it belongs and hired classroom instructors instead of non-teaching specialists.

  92. When looking at salary, seasoned teachers need to consider “total compensation.” For example, in metro Atlanta, DeKalb, Fulton, Clayton and Atlanta school districts do not participate in Social Security. Cobb is among ones that do. In addition, Gwinnett has a county-funded retirement on top of TRS. Check out this article: https://www.ajc.com/news/double-pensions-boost-retirement-gwinnett-educators/m8LgzdEdZvutpC6PW4OPCN/

  93. Which code is for the Special Ed Teacher? And how much will the teacher receive if they are on provisional?

  94. This and That

    Special Education Teachers are paid the same as general education teachers. Based on education and years teaching.

  95. What scale will Academic Coaches get paid on?

  96. What category will Instructional Support Specialist fall under? This is confusing.

  97. Patty Williams

    I looked at the agenda for the upcoming school board meeting to see if school psychologists were listed on the proposed salary schedule. I looked at all categories, even 129 as you suggested, and did not see us listed anywhere.
    It shouldn’t be this confusing. In this day and time especially, it would seem that transparency would be a priority.

  98. I read the documents that are being brought before the board. NOTHING in these documents (that I could see) assure that there will be no pay cut for veteran teachers (those with 30+ years). Please OPPOSE this new scale UNLESS there is a modification made to ensure that there will be NO pay cuts and that those who are paid higher than this new scale receive a 2.5% pay raise as well. Thank you.

  99. Hi
    All employees at my school received an email from the bookkeeper stating no one will get a pay cut,and there will be 2.5 raise to all employees. A bookkeeper doesn’t put an email out there unless someone in authority told her to release the email…just saying. Jill stated the copy of the email in this thread.

  100. Hello Educator. I asked the bookkeeper at my school yesterday about this. She said that she didn’t know anything about the new pay scale or of such an email being sent. Do you know the origin of the original email?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *