The Judson Independent School District board of trustees unanimously approved raises for staff starting next school year.
Officials with the district still do not know what information may have been compromised by hackers. Credit: Emily Donaldson / San Antonio Report

The Judson Independent School District board of trustees on Thursday unanimously approved $10 million in raises for staff that will go into effect next school year.

The 2021-22 compensation plan includes a 2% raise for all teachers and a 3% raise for all auxiliary and clerical staff. It also increases salaries for teachers with six to 20 years of experience, making Judson ISD more comparable to surrounding districts.

A new teacher will start at $53,712 next school year, according to a district press release.

Superintendent Jeanette Ball said the $10 million investment is probably the most Judson ISD has spent on staff raises. The district employs about 3,000 people, according to the district’s 2019-20 state academic performance report. Almost 24,000 students were enrolled this school year.

District 1 trustee Suzanne Kenoyer said investing in staff was the “right thing to do” after all they have done in meeting the challenges of the past year, from the coronavirus pandemic to the historic winter storm.

“It’s not a reward; it’s what they’re due,” she said. “Our people are our biggest resource because that’s what has the greatest effect on the ability of our students to achieve.”

In addition to the salary increases, the board approved stipends for some new positions, such as aides, art teachers, theater assistants, elementary school webmasters, and lead teachers at the elementary level for duties done “above and beyond your normal workday,” Ball said.

Professional staff also will receive a 2% raise. The 3% raise for auxiliary and clerical staff brings the district minimum wage to $14.04 and $14.96 for clerical and instructional support personnel, depending on the level of experience.

District 7 trustee Rafael Diaz Martinez Jr. said the district needs to make sure it can sustain these raises by becoming a “healthier” organization that attracts and keeps employees.

“This is one of the most impactful investments that we’re going to be making in order to get the district to the next level,” he said.

Brooke Crum covered education for the San Antonio Report.