Governor Bryant signed SB 2770 (teacher pay raise) on Tuesday and signed HB 1643 (K-12 appropriation) earlier today. In accordance with state law, school districts must give notice of nonrenewal to teachers on or before April 15 OR within 10 calendar days of the Governor approving the appropriation bill, whichever date is later. As the appropriation bill was signed earlier today, April 28 is the deadline for districts to provide written notice of nonrenewal to certified staff.
MPE receives numerous inquiries each year regarding how long educators have to sign and return their contracts. Educators have 10 days to return their signed contract. Districts may distribute contracts at their discretion. Some districts have already issued 2019-20 contracts, while others will issue contracts in the coming weeks.
State Auditor Shad White – appointed by Governor Bryant last July to fill an unexpired term - released a brief yesterday criticizing administrative and non-instructional spending by local districts from 2007-2017. The brief contends that local districts could have increased teacher pay if these costs had remained frozen at 2007 levels. The analysis included funding from local, state and federal resources, but failed to recognize that federal funds are usually limited to certain expenditures. It also failed to acknowledge that inflation for this time period was 18.2%. MPE's primary concern is that the brief implied local districts are to blame for teachers not receiving a larger raise, when the crux of teacher salaries are paid by the state and the salary scale is determined by state legislators. We firmly believe the brief is a diversion tactic intended to take the heat off state legislators for failing to pass a significant pay raise and for their deceptive insertion of voucher funds into the DFA bill. Educators are mad, engaged and holding the legislative leadership and legislators accountable for their votes, which makes the leadership and legislators uncomfortable.