JCPS teachers to receive 4% raise, $1,000 stipend next school year

As part of a new agreement between JCPS and the Jefferson County Teachers Association, employees will receive a 4% raise and teachers will receive a $1,000 one-
Published: Jun. 3, 2022 at 1:25 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Jefferson County Public School teachers are set to receive their largest raise from the district in 15 years at 4%, and teachers will also receive an additional $1,000 one year stipend as part of a new agreement with JCPS and the Jefferson County Teachers Association.

“The looming crisis of a teacher shortage is real, it is real in every county in the Commonwealth, and it is real in every state across this nation, and we are going to have to act on that,” Superintendent Dr. Marty Pollio said during a press conference on Friday.

Pollio said the General Assembly gave the district $7 million for teacher raises last legislative session, which equated to a .9% raise for all staff.

“A less than a 1% raise is not going to fix this problem,” Pollio said.

JCPS is using Support Education Excellence in Kentucky, or SEEK, and Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief, or ESSER funds to pay for the remaining 3% raise and the $1,000 stipends. This will cost the district around $49 million, according to Pollio.

In addition, teachers who work at schools in the “choice zone,” which are predominately in the West End, will receive an $8,000 to $14,000 stipend in an effort to recruit and retain educators, and create more hiring options for principals.

The “choice zone” stipend will increase 1.5% each year and cap at $14,000.

When asked if the pay raises for teachers will be effective in recruiting and retention, Brent McKim, JCTA President said, “Right now the answer is really no one knows, but we owe it to those students to try and to track the data and to see if it makes a difference.”

However, JCPS will not have enough money to continue to cover the pay raises and stipends after three years. Pollio called on state lawmakers to create a continuous cash flow for public schools next session so districts can afford to pay their staff a competitive wage and ease the teacher shortage.

“We have to do this, we are in a position where we have to do this, but I would not be honest if I didn’t say there are serious concerns about funding for public schools, funding for teachers, funding for supports kids need three or four years down the road,” Pollio said.

The average JCPS teacher makes $65,000 to $66,000 a year, according to McKim. With the 4% raise and $1,000 stipend, teachers will make around an additional $3,600 to $3,640.

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