Escambia Teachers Get Raises; 2008-09 Calendar Vote Postponed

November 28, 2007

teachers.jpgThe paychecks of Escambia County public school teachers are going up next year, thanks to an 8.26% pay increase approved Tuesday night by the Escambia County School Board.

The minimum starting salary for a first year teacher with a bachelor’s degree will rise from $29,105 to $32,000 beginning with the 2008-2009 school year. The maximum pay for a teacher with a bachelor’s degree and about 25 years with the system would go from $48,197 to $50,000. A master’s degree earns teachers a $4,500 yearly bonus and board certification brings another $3,800 a year.

“It took about seven years to get to this point,” said Bill Vincent from the Escambia Education Association. He was referring to a five year step increase plan that culminated with the school board’s vote Tuesday night. That plan was intended to bring Escambia County teacher salaries in-line with state averages.

“We still have work to do in the middle and top to be competative,” he said. The average pay for teachers in Escambia County last school year was about $39,000. That compares to about $43,000 in neighboring Santa Rosa County and about $47,500 in Okaloosa County. The state average was about $43,200.

Vincent, who is the Escambia Education Associations bargaining representative, said 96.5 percent of teachers and 95% of support personnel in the system had voted in favor of the school board’s plan.

In other business, the Escambia County School Board voted to postpone approval of the the 2008-2009 school year calendar until their February meeting.

District 2 Member Gerald Boone expressed a desire to see the semester end by the time students start their 2008 Christmas break. Under the currently proposed calendar, students would return from Christmas break to being semester and district exams.

The board also made numerous personnel changes Tuesday night. Among North Escambia schools, the school board:

  • appointed Francis Gindl as an Ernest Ward Middle School teacher effective 10/15/07.
  • appointed Charlyn Madison as a Carver/Century teacher effective 10/25/07.
  • accepted the retirement of Carol Hopkins as Reading Coordinator at Northview High School effective 10/31/07. She had been a teacher for 40 years.
  • promoted Sonja S. Allen to Food Services Assistant II at Carver/Century effective 10/10/07.
  • promoted Christine A. Barrett to School Data Specialist I at Ernest Ward Middle School effective 10/03/07.
  • appointed Charlotte B. Giddins as a teacher assistant at Ernest Ward Middle effective 10/15/07.
  • accepted the retirement of Donna M. Miller as a custodian at Ernest Ward Middle effective 10/03/07.

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