By Greg Bird
With little discussion the McCreary County Board of Education approved an across the board two percent pay raise for all staff at Thursday night’s monthly meeting.
Superintendent Michael Cash presented the proposal, the only item up for discussion on the agenda, by stating the projected budget contains room for such a move.
“We have looked at the budget and believe we are at a safe point,” Cash said. “The staff have earned it.”
No additional financial information, such as the cost of the raise and the number of employees affected by the raise, was presented at the meeting. The action passed with a 3-0 vote. (Board members Nelda Gilreath and Rhonda Armijo were not present at the meeting.
The Voice asked the Central Office for those figures and was informed the total cost of the raises would be $218,013.59 for the next school year and will cover every employee of the District.
Many teachers and staff members get an automatic raise of about 1.5 percent annually, based on their years of experience. Classified staff can also get raises once they move up in the ranking system, based on degrees and certifications earned.
In 2014 the Kentucky Legislature mandated school districts implement a 1-percent raise to all employees, followed the next year with a 2-percent raise to improve teacher pay and recruitment.
Earlier in the meeting Superintendent Cash announced the annual Kids Fest, an event put together by the District’s Youth Service and Family Resource Centers, will be held on July 19.
The event provides free school supplies and other amenities, such as hair cuts, to students in the District. No time for the event has been announced.
Additionally the school system will be undertaking a District-wide safety exercise on July 17 and 18. All school staff are expected to take part in training presented by the Kentucky State Police, local law enforcement and emergency services.
The School District, including the Central Office is closed until July 9.
The Board honored the 2017-18 Reward Program recipients prior to conducting business.
Honored were: (WCE) K- Tatum Watson, 1- Jordyn Bryant, 2- James Murphy, 3- Caylyn daugherty, 4- Brooke Lay, 5- Tessa Upchurch, 6- Audre Shook. (PKE) K-Evelyn Burney, 1-Greyson Miller, 2- Aaron Watts, 3- Madison Coffey, 4- McKenna Hamlin, 5- Keegan Musgrove, 6- Troy King. (MCMS) 7-Raylee Strunk, 8- Kyleigh Hollis. (MCHS) 9- Alexa Bruce, 10- Kelcey King, 11-Kobe Perry, 12- Dacey Shook.
The students were presented cash awards based on their grade level, ranging from $100 to $1,200. Those funds will be held in a special account in the student’s name to be released upon graduation. The program is designed to aid students in their post-graduation endeavors for pursuing college or career goals.
The program was initiated in 2002 ago as a means to award students for their academic, behavior and citizenship progress throughout the school year.
The next regular scheduled meeting of the McCreary County Board of Education will be on Thursday, July 19 at 6:30 p.m. in the Central Office.