Louise ISD school board raised salaries across the district by up to 8 percent as part of its budget for 2021 in a unanimous vote during last week’s meeting.
The raise will cost the district $300,000 in its first year and will be backdated to the first day staff reported back to work for the 2021 school year.
“We have had to pay for a lot of necessary repairs and upgrades over the last several years,” Superintendent Garth Oliver said. “Extra funds are coming in this year thanks to our solar contract, and we wanted to make sure we did right by our teachers.”
The starting salary for a Louise ISD teacher is $48,601.30 per year. Staff members usually see
3 percent raise every year, but board spending stopped raises over the last three years, Superintendant Garth Oliver said.
The General fund Budget is more than $9 million. Louise ISD will use a portion of its income from Aktina Renewable Power Project via the general fund budget to cover the raise for teachers, Business Manager Pam Wagner said.
Aktina, owned by the Japanese gas utility company Tokyo Gas America, could infuse millions into the school district’s budget via its 4,800 -acre, $1.4 million solar module project.
LISD employs 42 teachers and 40 staff members for 500 students. The highest-paid teacher in the district makes $64,963.80 before the eight percent increase.
In addition to the district pay raises, all 82 staff members will get a $2,000 one-time stipend from the government because of COVID-19 relief funds.
“The $2,000 and their new raises will surely help teachers who have been on the front lines over the past year,” Oliver said. “I am glad we have found a way to give directly to the teachers who have sacrificed so much.”