Tuscaloosa Approves Pay Raise for City Teachers – Is It Enough?
Tuscaloosa City School teachers can expect a pay raise soon. According to WBRC, the Tuscaloosa City School Board approved a one percent pay increase that will take effect by the end of October.
Deron Cameron, executive director of human resources, acknowledged that Shelby and Jefferson counties pay their teachers more. Cameron wants to make higher pay a priority of Tuscaloosa City Schools.
“It’s part of our mission with our strategic plan we want to recruit, reward, and retain our teachers. While we realize we hope we could’ve done more with the one percent our goal in the next 5 years to increase it to seven percent.”
However, some argue that the meager one percent increase is not enough, and forcing teachers to wait five years for any significant increase is too long. Newly elected school board member Erica Grant voted against the one percent pay raise because she believes it’s not enough, urging the board to do more to reward Tuscaloosa teachers. “When you do get a raise, you know you want to be more than one percent. One percent you really can’t see,” said Grant. Grant represents District Five on the school board and has wasted no time acclimating to her new position. “I don’t think we are in any financial bind with 233.8 million- dollar budget that we couldn’t give the teachers at least a 3 percent raise.”
Grant hopes to continue conversations with the superintendent and chief financial officer about future pay raises for Tuscaloosa teachers. For now, teachers can still expect that one percent pay increase by the end of October.