WAUWATOSA, Wis. — Teachers in the Wauwatosa School District are in for a bump in pay.
Monday night the school board voted for a 12-percent salary increase for the 2023 - 24 school year.
The recommendation will raise starting teacher salary in the Wauwatosa school district to over $48,000 a year -- putting Tosa in the top 10-percent starting salaries in the region.
Milwaukee County Board Supervisor for District 6, Shawn Rolland, tweeted Monday, "Tonight, the Wauwatosa School Board approved a *12% salary increase* proposed by the school district to attract, retain and inspire high-quality educators."
Read the executive summary of the teacher compensation proposal below:
Related reporting below:
Racine teachers protest for better wages and working conditions amid inflation
By Ubah Ali, Mar 20, 2023
RACINE — Better wages and better working conditions. Teachers in Racine took those demands Monday night to the school board.
One by one, educators packed the district building, chanting, "Where's the funding?"
Travis Eales is a 4th grade teacher at Julian Thomas Elementary School. After 11 years as an educator, he had to get a second job to keep up with inflation.
"Get our salaries increased so that we can make ends meet," Eales said. "The wage we are receiving is not enough."
According to the Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission, 8% is the cost-of-living adjustment for 2023.
"Educators are asking for cost of living adjustment, and a raise in an addition to that," said Racine Educators United (REU) President Angelina Cruz.
Cruz said it's crucial because it keeps teachers at pace with the rate of inflation.
In a statement, a spokesperson for the district said, pay raises in line with the cost of living increase as well as an increase for years of service would cost the district more than $14 million at a time when districts across the state are facing significant deficits, adding that the board will consider salary increases in the coming weeks.
The union believes the district has room in the budget to make decisions that are centered on what's best for students.
"The district is having a difficult time both retaining and attracting educators," Cruz said. "From our perspective, it will cost the district more if they increase the already accelerated rate of turnover that exists."
Cruz said creating stability in the classroom will retain people which in turn will attract more teachers.
Members of REU would like to meet with the district to address various issues including pay increases and school safety.
Cruz said they've been met with stalling tactics. So, they turned to the school board because they have the ability to direct district administration to meet and confer with the union. Cruz believes it's key to a better work environment for teachers and will better serve students.
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