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TMCNet:  Kannapolis school board adopts new salary supplement model

[February 15, 2013]

Kannapolis school board adopts new salary supplement model

Feb 14, 2013 (Independent Tribune - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- KANNAPOLIS, N.C. -- The Kannapolis City Board of Education unanimously approved a new model and higher amounts for annual teacher supplements at its meeting on Monday.


Local school systems determine the supplement amount that certain staff members receive, which is in addition to the pay scale the state determines.

The Kannapolis board members said they wanted a new model to reward teachers who have a long history of working for the school system and to provide supplements close to the amount that Cabarrus County and Rowan-Salisbury school systems provide for teachers.

One of the changes is that the new model has more tiers for teachers based on years of experience.

In the model the school system currently uses, there were tiers for teachers who had up to two years of experience; three to five years of experience; six to eight years of experience; nine to 11 years of experience; and more than 12 years of experience.

For each of the tiers, there is a $200 difference between teachers who have a bachelor's degree and teachers who have a master's degree. The supplements currently range from a teacher with a bachelor's degree and up to two years of experience earning a $1,600 supplement to one who had a master's degree and at least 12 years of experience earning a supplement of $2,200.

Now, the model has tiers for 12 to 19 years of experience, 20 to 24 years of experience and at least 25 years of experience, and teachers who fall in the other tiers will have a supplement of $100 more annually.

Under the new model, a teacher with a bachelor's degree and up to two years of experience will now have an annual supplement of $1,700. A teacher with a master's degree and at least 25 years of experience will earn a supplement of $2,600 annually.

The board first discussed this new model at its budget work session last week.

Board member Doris Buchanan said last week that she liked adding tiers to the model, since teachers who had more than 12 years of experience were just stagnant after that.

"At least they have something to look forward to (now)," Buchanan said.

Board members had also said last week they would like for the amounts to be higher, if that was financially possible. The version they saw and approved this week had higher supplement amounts in each tier.

At this week's meeting, the board also heard an update from the internal strategic planning committee.

The first of the strategic plan's goals has to do with graduation and proficiency rates.

Assistant Superintendent Chip Buckwell said the system's graduation rate, 82.8 percent, is above the state average due to numerous efforts at A.L. Brown High School and the system's preparing students for the transition between school levels.

The plan's third goal is to attract, employ and retain highly qualified staff.

Buckwell said that last year the system had a summer of professional development to prepare for Common Core State Standards , and staff will have more professional development this summer.

"That's going to really help our teachers be prepared for implementing what is going to be a mandatory rollout across the state," Buckwell said.

He added that there is also formal and informal mentoring, as well as collaborative planning, among staff members.

"If there's any one thing we've done well and right with teachers, it's collaborative planning," Buckwell said. "They made very good use of the collaborative planning." The fourth strategic goal is to provide exemplary services for Limited English Proficient (LEP), exceptional children, at-risk and Academically and Intellectually Gifted (AIG) students.

The LEP students reached their achievement goals, which measure proficiency, growth and language acquisition, said Kelly Burgess , director of student assessment for the school system.

For the AIG students, the system has extended services by putting funding, professional development and planning time in place, she said. The system also received feedback from a parent advisory committee, surveys and an internal advisory committee so it can develop a plan for AIG.

At the Kannapolis Alternative Learning Center, there has been a major focus on increasing access to mental health services, said Jessica Grant , director of student services for the system.

A new counselor at Kannapolis Middle School has visited the center for individual counseling, and the process for referring students to Daymark Recovery Services, Inc. , which provides services for people seeking treatment of a mental illness or substance abuse, has also improved, Grant said.

The center has also worked with several groups to implement programs for building leadership skills.

The next meeting for the Kannapolis school board is on March 11.

Contact reporter Jessica Groover Pacek: 704-789-9152 ___ (c)2013 the Independent Tribune (Kannapolis, N.C.) Visit the Independent Tribune (Kannapolis, N.C.) at www.independenttribune.com Distributed by MCT Information Services

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