CS Teacher Proposes Pay Raise Through Budget Surplus

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Many College Station teachers say it's time for a raise.

At Tuesday night's school board meeting, Rock Prairie Elementary teacher Keri Bedard gave a presentation based on three months-worth of studying she's done.

Much of Bedard's research focused on districts similar to College Station. Citing six districts and comparing them to CSISD, Bedard says teachers locally are the lowest paid.

Other research of Bedard's, which she had informed the district of in advance, revolved around a $25-30 million budget surplus, which she believes could be used to pay CSISD's 610 teachers a bit more.

That extra total, she proposed, would be $3,500 per teacher, at a cost to the district of $2.1 million. That, she said, would bring CSISD teachers to the median range for the districts she had compared.

"We're ready," Bedard said. "We're ready to be compensated, and we're ready to be compensated at a comparable rate to other school districts that are very similar to us."

When it comes to the budget, CSISD Superintendent Eddie Coulson says salaries make up about three-fourths of the total. That makes salaries one of the hottest topics come budget time, which is approaching.

Coulson says Bedard's proposal will be among the many reports considered by the school board when the time comes to determine the next year's budget.

Dozens of faculty from CSISD's schools were at the presentation, and gave a large round of applause to Bedard when she was finished.