Bryan ISD Giving Raises To Teachers, Extra $2,000 For New Ones

Bryan ISD has approved a nearly two percent raise for teachers, meaning those starting out will make more than ever before.

News 3 spoke with some brand new BISD teachers about the pay raise and investigated how the district's pay compares to similar sized school districts.

It's the teachers turn to learn at Bryan ISD new employee orientation.

Kayla Garner will be a third grade teacher at Neal Elementary.

"This is my very first teaching job," said Garner, a recent Texas A&M graduate.

In addition to the excitement of a new job the district is upping the salary for new teachers from $38,000 to $40,000 a year.

"I know one big thing that's important for me is that my family has health insurance so that will definitely help offset the cost. Just one less worry and then it's just great to have extra pay to be able to pay those bills," said Garner.

Diana Hines is also a new teacher and believes more than ever BISD is a good fit for her.

"It is one of the biggest districts and when I read that we were getting a pay raise I got really excited and even more assured that I chose the right district to teach with," said Hines.

While teachers start at $40,000 in Bryan a 20-year teacher there makes $50,500.

In College Station teachers get a starting salary of $38,250 and $51,788 for a 20-year veteran.

In Waco it's $40,000 starting out and $49,000 at 20 years.

Longview ISD is $40,280 the first year and $51,120 after 20 years.

"When you look at what impacts a child's education more than anything, it's that classroom teacher. So we have got to make sure we can stay competitive and get the best in the classroom," said Sandy Farris, Bryan ISD Communications Director.

"I looked in a few districts... It wasn't very difficult to make the decision because I had been in Bryan ISD as a tutor for a few years and I love it," said Garner.

With more pay comes more challenges and work will follow with the new STAAR testing, and budget cuts during the ongoing crisis in public education funding.

Bryan ISD is expecting a $1.2 million budget shortfall for next year and is considering saving money with larger class sizes and having teachers instruct an extra class each day.

The final budget will be adopted before the school year begins.

According to the Texas Education Agency the minimum salary for a teacher in Texas is $27,320 for the 2011-2012 school year.

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