A salary increase has been recently approved for teachers in Leon County Public Schools. The raises will particularly affect beginning teachers, whose salaries will rise to $43,404 a year—a nearly $6000 increase.
This salary increase comes after a $5.3 million allocation from the district and the state, with 80% of those funds being used to increase the wages of starting teachers. Also affected are non-classroom educators, such as media specialists, guidance counselors, school psychologists and social workers.
“We’re able to bring them up to the new base with those funds,” said Leon County Schools Chief Financial Officer Kim Banks.
The conversation surrounding salary increases for teachers is nothing new in the state of Florida. Governor Ron DeSantis has pushed for a starting pay of $47,500 for beginning teachers, a goal Leon County is working towards achieving in the coming years.
On Oct. 15, Leon County Schools moved toward another goal when students began receiving Chromebooks. Back in June, the School Board approved an $11 million plan for one-to-one technology access, enabling the district to purchase over 32,000 Chromebooks.
The handing out of Chromebooks started at Woodville K-8 School and is set to be followed up at Cobb Middle School and DeSoto Trail Elementary. Devices were originally intended to be handed out at the start of the school year but were delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“By the end of the nine weeks, we’re hoping we will have the devices…for over 50% of our schools,” said Leon County School Board Superintendent Rocky Hanna. He hopes that the remainder of the over 30,000 Chromebooks will be handed out to students across the district in the near future.