Trustees approve 5% pay raise for teachers and hourly personnel

By George Slaughter, News Editor
Posted 5/27/22

Katy school trustees approved a 5% pay increase for teachers and hourly personnel, with all other personnel receiving 3% increases.

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Trustees approve 5% pay raise for teachers and hourly personnel

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Katy school trustees approved a 5% pay increase for teachers and hourly personnel, with all other personnel receiving 3% increases.

Trustees approved the raises at a special meeting Thursday.

The raise comes as the district continues to compete with other districts to fill vacancies in their respective teaching ranks.

The original proposal presented called for a 5% increase for teachers, a 4% increase for hourly employees and a 3% increase for all other employees. Superintendent Ken Gregorski said the raises would give the district an approximately $11.5 million deficit. He said, however, that the budget was in development for trustee review and approval in August.

Trustee Rebecca Fox asked how much the deficit would grow if the hourly employees received a 5% increase. Gregorski said the figure would be about $500,000, perhaps $600,000.

“If the board is comfortable with that, then I’m comfortable with that, too,” Gregorski said.

Superintendent Ken Gregorski cited several options to address the approximately $12 million deficit. These options range from increased class sizes at secondary campuses, elimination of the Katy instructional supply budget, reallocation of federal relief funds, budget reductions and selected program reductions.

Trustee Victor Perez seemed comfortable with the extra raise for the hourly personnel.

“If we’re comfortable with $11.5, we should be comfortable with $12,” Perez said. “If not $12, then we’re not comfortable with $11.5.”

Fox was pleased with the pay raise proposal.

“It’s a great improvement form the 3% we discussed last time,” Fox said. “Five percent is better.”

Teacher retention and compensations have long been issues for school districts across the nation. In Katy, trustees had planned to decide the matter at their May 16 meeting. At that meeting they were presented with a proposal to increase salaries by 3% across the board.

At that meeting, Fox asked if the vote could be delayed, citing a desire for a larger increase, along with more numbers and analysis. Board President Greg Schulte said the vote could be delayed. However, he said Gregorski had told him that it was customary for teachers, who are leaving for the summer, to know what they could expect when they return to school this fall.

Given the timing, Schulte proposed—and trustees approved—a subcommittee to consider various for board approval at Thursday’s meeting. Schulte said having the subcommittee working with Gregorski and his staff to identify and evaluate salary increase options would be faster than doing so in a full board meeting.

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