Remember that teachers no longer receive longevity pay like other state employees. Remember that bonuses are not salary increases. They are usually one-time payments. Also remember that bonuses get taxed and that none of it can go toward retirement.
Senate Bill 818, which was revised as late as yesterday, includes a one-time bonus of $350 for teachers due in October.
Another thing to recall is that our budget is a two-year biennial budget. That means if this is passed, what teachers really will be getting is a $350 bonus for two-years of service at $175 dollars a school year over two school years. That’s a bonus of $17.50 a month for the contracted time (which for teachers is 10 months a year).
If history serves as a template, bonus pay gets taxed higher than salary. That $17.50 in “bonus” then becomes something like $11 dollars and change (using onpay.com’s calculator).
That’s not really that much.
And there is no evidence that bonus pay has ever worked in education. None.
If Berger & Company want to allot $350 per teacher then they could do it in this fashion: buy resources for schools to begin thinking about effectively and safely opening up when schools reconvene either physically or remotely in the fall.
Even then more will be needed. Lots more.
And the rate of infections from COVID-19 are still rising. Another thousand cases were reported yesterday in the state alone.