The budget proposed for the Greenville County school district’s 2022-23 school year would give teachers a raise of at least $ 2,000.
Greenville County Schools Superintendent Burke Royster presented his proposed budget of $ 788,619,000 – an increase of about $ 66 million from the previous year – during a budget workshop meeting on Wednesday.
Included are pay increases for teachers and bus drivers, and an increase in the minimum pay for other district employees to $ 15 per hour.
Changes in state funding for public schools that state legislators are currently discussing would cover the increases. Though those changes have not been finalized, it is estimated that the district will receive about $ 369 million from the state, which is an increase of about $ 53 million from the previous year.
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The budget proposed for Greenville County’s school district, the state’s largest with about 77,000 students, is still subject to change and based on projected revenues and expenditures. The district will make a recommendation on how to balance the budget on May 12 during the first reading of the general-fund budget, and both a public hearing and the second reading of the budget will take place on June 6 before plans are finalized.
The proposed budget exceeds current revenue projections, expected to total to $ 782,897,000, by about $ 5.7 million. To make up for the shortfall, the district will have to recommend a property tax increase in the county, use non-recurring revenue or rely on a combination of those options.
“I think it is very likely that we would propose some sort of tax increase,” Royster said.
Greenville County has the highest minimum teacher salary in South Carolina at $ 42,515 and the second-highest average teacher salary at $ 61,930. Charleston County has the highest average teacher salary at $ 62,721.
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Greenville County Schools employees see pay increases every year based on their placement on a stepped salary schedule, but it’s uncommon for everyone to get a flat rate increase across the board like they would with what’s proposed for the next fiscal year, said spokesperson Whitney Hanna.
The last time this happened was in 2019 when teachers received a $ 3,000 raise, according to Royster.
Other proposed expenditures address internal pay inequities, lower student-to-staff ratios and measures to keep the district competitive in employee recruitment. Some of these proposals are:
- $ 1,389,000 to increase the ratio of elementary school counselors to students at elementary schools with at least 661 students
- $ 897,000 to increase bus drivers’ starting pay to $ 19 per hour and ensure all bus drivers receive a minimum 5% pay increase
- $ 820,000 to adjust principal salaries to address internal inequity in pay
- $ 700,000 for security enhancements
Kaelyn Cassidy lives in Pendleton and writes stories about the Greenville area. When she’s not stuck to her keyboard, she likes thrift shopping and spending time outdoors. You can reach Kaelyn at [email protected] or @kaelyn_cassidy on Twitter.