Teacher pay raise clears Legislature

news_djournal_greenBy Bobby Harrison

Daily Journal Jackson Bureau

JACKSON – Both chambers of the Mississippi Legislature passed a compromise proposal Tuesday that will give the state’s 30,000 teachers a $2,500 pay raise over a two-year period.

The legislation now goes to Gov. Phil Byrant, who is expected to sign it into law.

The first year of the pay raise, $1,500, is scheduled to kick in during the upcoming school year, beginning July 1.

While the House first passed a pay raise proposal during the 2014 session, the compromise that passed Tuesday with only two no votes in the two chambers is essentially the same as what Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves proposed late in the session.

The proposal still has the School Recognition Program component that will begin on July 1, 2016. Under that program, teachers and faculty can receive a one-time bonus each year based on school performance.

House Education Chair John Moore, R-Brandon, as well as most House Democrats, said there were problems with the enactment of the School Recognition Program. But they agreed to pass the pay raise plan with the understanding that the program would be revised in the coming sessions before it goes into effect.