Ada City Schools Superintendent Mike Anderson

Ada City Schools Superintendent Mike Anderson

Ada City Schools’ certified employees will receive a $1,220 raise for the 2019-20 school year.

The Ada Board of Education voted 4-0 Monday to approve the district’s new salary schedule for certified employees, which reflects the addition of the raises that lawmakers authorized earlier this year. Board member Keri Norris was absent.

The schedule includes the $1,220 raise at every step, Superintendent Mike Anderson said Tuesday.

“In addition to that, we pay the employees’ share of teacher retirement in addition to what the employer’s share is,” he said. “We did not back off the employees’ share of that teacher retirement; we’re going to pay that in addition to the $1,220, which in effect gives them about a $1,310 raise at every step.”

Anderson was referring to the Oklahoma Teachers Retirement System, also known as TRS. Membership in TRS is open to all public school employees who work half time or more, and teachers and administrators are required to be members.

The district’s new salary schedule outlines how much teachers and other certified employees will be paid going forward, based on their level of education and years of experience. The plan covers everyone from first-year teachers to those with 28 years of experience.

Under the 2019-20 schedule, a first-year teacher with a bachelor’s degree will earn $39,276.61 a year. A new teacher who holds national board certification and a bachelor’s degree would also earn $39,276.61 annually, and a new teacher with a master’s degree would receive $40,756.92 each year.

Developing the new schedule was challenging because the Legislature authorized school districts to give an average raise of $1,220 to their teachers, Anderson said. He said that meant districts could have given more money to their most experienced teachers and smaller raises to their brand-new teachers.

“That didn’t sound like a good plan to me, so we gave the $1,220 across the board,” he said. “But because of the way the legislation was written and using the term ‘average,’ the state was now unable to put out a minimum salary schedule. Because they don’t know whether the district’s going to give $1,220 across the board or whether they’re going to give $1,500 to these teachers, $900 to these.”

Anderson said the state’s minimum salary schedule is essentially the same as last year’s, which prompted Ada City Schools officials to revamp the district’s schedule so it provides more accurate salary information.

In other business, the school board:

• Approved MacHill Construction’s bid to convert the old band room at Ada Junior High School into a tech engineering and aviation lab, which will be financed by part of the proceeds from a 2018 bond issue.

The district will pay MacHill $168,408 for its work.

• Approved Lions Gate Roofing Inc.’s bid to repair the roof at a Washington Grade Center outbuilding, which was damaged in a recent windstorm, for $7,132,79.

Eric Swanson is the City Hall and general assignment reporter for The Ada News. He spent 15 years working at the Dodge City Daily Globe in Dodge City, Kansas, before joining The Ada News’ staff in 2012.