MIAMI - Miami-Dade County Public Schools and the United Teachers of Dade (UTD) reached a tentative agreement Monday that will see teachers receive a pay increase between $2,200 and $2,500.
"This is a momentous day for teachers in Miami-Dade," Superintendent Alberto Carvalho said in a statement. "The combination of compensation increases and a superior benefits package will reward those who have the greatest impact on the future of our students: our teachers and support personnel."
"This is an important step in the right direction," added UTD President Fedrick Ingram. "Miami's teachers and support staff sacrifice so much. They have lost ground during the great recession. This agreement marks the beginning of turning this around. We creatively used a combination of local, state, and federal dollars to fund this agreement. It wasn't easy, but it had to happen."
The increase comes from base salary increases, one-time supplement payments, and Race to the Top performance pay, said the schools district and the teachers union.
All teachers will be eligible for Race to the Top performance pay. A total of $20 million will be awarded with individual awards ranging from about $1,000 to $4,000.
The agreement must be ratified by UTD and approved by the School Board of Miami-Dade County. The total cost of the salary proposal for both teachers and support personnel is $70 million, which includes $50 million allocated in the state budget for raises and performance pay and $20 million from two years of Race to the Top funding.
"It takes an entire team to educate children, and we wanted to make sure the support staff were recognized for their important place in our schools," said Ingram.
"Let me emphasize, this is only a start," Ingram added. "We will need to work tirelessly during the next legislative session to get the state to fully fund education. The underfunding of public schools is not acceptable to our children, parents, and the community. UTD will continue to drive home the point that there is no substitution for appropriate support to our schools so we can reclaim the promise of public education. Part of that promise is to adequately fund respectable pay packages for all teachers and support professionals --- after all, these professionals guide our children to their future."
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