The 86th legislative session concluded, and House Bill 3 was passed. The bill mandates teacher salary increases throughout the district.
“This is an exciting time for Navasota ISD and there is a lot of anticipation as to how HB 3 will affect NISD and its employees,” explained Navasota superintendent Dr. Stu Musick. “We want to make sure we do the right thing and do it the right way, so we don’t want to rush into it.”
Musick said that NISD board of directors have worked diligently last month to familiarize themselves with information as it came out pertaining to HB 3.
On Thursday, Texas Education Agency (TEA) commissioner Mike Morath shared updates on how HB 3 will affect school district budgets and planning for next year with salary implementations.
HB 3 increases the basic allotment per student from an average allotment of $5,140 per student to $6,160 per student.
This increase in revenue to school districts makes up for lost revenue from property tax relief, another huge focus in the legislative session.
The bill provides $11.6 billion for pubic education, $5 billion of which stems from lost revenue of property taxes.
$6.6 billion will go toward salary increases and additional funding for schools.
Affects at NISD
The State Weighted Average Daily Attendance (WADA) increases from $5,140 to $6,160. Navasota’s WADA increases from $5,899 to $6,634.
Property taxes aren’t certified within the county until the end of July and not certified by the state until January. “This is what we are expecting our numbers to look like but it’s just an approximation,” said Musick.
NISD is predicting $2,756,835 i n revenue increase for the 2019-2020 school year, according to Musick.
Out of that money, HB 3 mandates 30 percent of additional revenues go toward salary increases (approximately $827,051).
The remaining 70 percent ($1,929,784) is additional funding that can be used in the district for maintenance and operational needs.
Salary increases are divided into two categories with HB 3. The first includes certified teachers, counselors, librarians and nurses. That group is required to receive 75 percent of the original 30 percent for salaries (approximately $620,288).
The remaining 25 percent goes to remaining staff (approximately $205,763) not including administrators. Musick noted that custodial and transportation services are contracted out and are not included.
There are 34 employees included as administrative staff at NISD. Musick said the administrative pay scale has not been updated or increased within at least the last seven years.
School districts have a minimum pay scale they must adhere to. “We have paid above the minimum scale in the past and it is our intention to continue to do so,” said Musick.
Not only does NISD plan on implementing the mandated raises, the plan is to raise the salary scales for all district employees. “We feel it is the right thing to do even though it will have to come from our local budget.”
Musick said budget workshops will continue in July and he plans on proposing the new pay scale to the NISD board in the July meeting. He said final budgets must be approved by Aug. 31, but the plan is to finalize NISD’s budget at the Aug. 26 meeting.