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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Pay up for Duval School Board member



Every fall, the state revises the statutory salaries for Florida school board members. It's up to individual members to decide whether to take any raises coming their way or not.

More often than not, the board members nod to political realities -- particularly that they're not giving increases to their employees -- and they decline. Many set their salaries at the same amount they pay a brand new teacher.

In Duval County, at least one School Board member is acknowledging another reality, that times are tough for her, too.

“I’m going to accept it,” Duval board member Paula Wright told the Florida Times-Union. “I work hard and despite what people think, this isn’t a part-time job. I’ve actually lost money being on the board and so, I’m not different, when I go to the gas pump, it’s the same price for me.” 

Last year, Duval board members froze their pay at the level of a new teacher, or $37,300. This year, their state-recommended salary is $40,161.

School board member salaries have been contentious in Florida for years. At one point, the state Legislature even stopped recommending pay rates, putting boards in the position of having to set their own salaries. In 2011, senator Steve Wise proposed eliminating board pay altogether. He contended that board members should serve because they care about kids, and not for a paycheck. That move went nowhere.

What are your local board members doing? Here's the 2012-13 official pay scale. (And the one from 2011-12 for comparison.) Should board members be taking raises? Or leaving the money on the table?

[Last modified: Thursday, November 29, 2012 3:08pm]


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