Salary changes could affect TISD workers

Published on Monday, 4 August 2014 23:10 - Written by EMILY GUEVARA eguevara@tylerpaper.com 

Proposed salary adjustments would affect 474 Tyler ISD employees if approved by the school board later this month.

Interim Superintendent Kim Tunnell said the district is proposing to use about $300,000 in unbudgeted revenue to level out some of the salary structure.

If approved by the board at the Aug. 21 meeting, these salary changes would affect about one-third of the district’s approximately 1,450 employees, Mrs. Tunnell said.

Unlike raises, which typically affect whole categories of employees or the entire workforce across the board, these adjustments to pay will affect only those positions that needed a change based on a study conducted this year for the district by the Texas Association of School Boards.

Based on that study, the district wants to ensure its pay for certain positions is comparable to that of other districts around the state with similar sizes, structures and demographics, Mrs. Tunnell said.

Affected employees could fall in the following categories: first-, third- and fourth-year teachers, clerical and technical, instructional coaches and instructional technology specialists, police officers and auxiliary such as food service.

However, not every employee in these groups would be affected, only those whose pay needed an adjustment based on the market value survey.

The proposal will not be implemented unless the board approves it as part of the proposed budget and tax rate on Aug. 21. 

Last year TISD awarded raises to teachers, paraprofessionals, manual trades employees, bus drivers and administrators.

In addition to the pay adjustments, the district administrators are proposing to set aside the remaining $260,000 in unbudgeted revenue for a strategic planning account.

Mrs. Tunnell said these funds would be used specifically for projects, enhancements and issues identified in the strategic plan, which the board approved in March.

The plan includes six objectives related to education, technology, graduate expectations, school safety and community diversity.

In other business, the board approved the hiring of Georgeanna Jones-Shaw as the next principal for Andy Woods Elementary School.

Ms. Jones-Shaw has served as the assistant principal at Andy Woods since 2009 and previously served in the same capacity at Ramey Elementary School. She started her education career in Richardson ISD as a seventh- and eighth-grade math teacher and coach. She also has worked as a T3 Instructor for Texas Instruments and served on the technology team for the Conference for the Advancement of Mathematics.

She replaces the previous principal, Brandon Chandler, who left in June to accept a position as principal of Arlington ISD’s West Elementary School.

A large group of what appeared to be Andy Woods staff was on hand and cheered the announcement of the new hire.

“To say that I am honored is not even enough because I am very honored,” Ms. Jones-Shaw said.

The board also approved the purchase of instruments and equipment not to exceed $100,000 for the visual and performing arts program.

Since 2009, that program has increased by almost 2,000 students, according to district information.

The district is predicting the band and orchestra programs will increase by at least 150 students this school year.

The district previously purchased more than $100,000 worth of instruments for the middle school band and orchestra programs.

Many of those middle school students are now in high school and the visual and performing arts programs are in need of more instruments, according to the district information.