Worcester Co. Schools to Cut 32 Positions For Teacher Pay Increa - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Worcester Co. Schools to Cut 32 Positions For Teacher Pay Increases

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NEWARK, Md. – The Worcester County Board of Education has decided to cut 32 positions in the 2015-2016 school year so that public school employees can receive pay increases, the district announced Tuesday.

When county commissioners adopted the county's fiscal year 2016 budget that did not support the funding needed for pay increases on June 2, board members knew they had some tough decisions to make.

“We have been forced into a terrible dilemma,” said Board President Robert Rothermel, Jr. “Should we leave the school system intact with no pay increases, or should we alter the system – through cuts – to provide the necessary funding for a fair compensation package? Both options have significant consequences. Both options affect our most valuable asset: People.”

As a result, a new agreement was ironed out between the Board of Education and two teacher associations, based on a $98.9 million budget. According to the district, the pay package increase adds up to approximately $1.9 million.

To afford this salary package, the school system will have to cut 32 jobs. At Tuesday's Board of Education meeting Superintendent Dr. Jerry Wilson identified the positions, which include 17.5 teachers, 13 educational assistants, and 1.5 administrators.

“Each of these 32 jobs directly supported a student's education,” Wilson said.

County commissioners have said that pay increases are more likely in fiscal year 2017.

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