Thank you to everyone who wrote to the Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD) Board last Monday in support of an across-the-board, cost-of-living adjustment for MMSD staff. The school board is meeting in closed session on Monday, May 7 to decide what level of cost-of-living adjustment they will offer our staff.
Since 2011, the cost of living has increased by over 11% while MMSD base wages have increased by only 2.6%. Under Act 10, Madison teachers can collectively bargain for a 2.13% base wage increase this year, which would make up some of this difference. However, the MMSD administration has only budgeted for a 0.5% cost-of-living increase in the 2018-19 school year. The school board has the power to offer our staff more.
Staff retention is becoming a serious problem in Madison’s schools. In the 2009-10 school year, only 50 MMSD teachers left the district prior to retirement. In 2016-17, that number ballooned to 209 teachers leaving MMSD prior to retirement. Madison Teachers, Inc. (MTI) believes there could be another 200 resignations before the start of the coming school year. Too many of our staff members are leaving the district for opportunities elsewhere.
MMSD needs to provide pay and working conditions that will both retain and attract excellent staff. MTI’s advocacy for a cost of living adjustment is one piece of a solution. To advocate for better learning and working conditions, MTI has created a statement on school safety and climate that lays out how MMSD can create stronger schools for our students, families and staff.
The MMSD administration has publicly stated that they are giving staff an average 2.5% pay increase this year. This statement is extremely misleading. Under the proposed budget for the 2018-19 school year, all staff are only guaranteed a 0.5% pay increase. Most of the “average” pay increase promoted by the administration is for a limited number of staff who have attained service or continuing education milestones. While these pay increases are important, the 2.13% across-the-board adjustment is the only way to address the rising cost of living for every staff member in the district.
Before Monday’s school board meeting, please take a moment to contact the school board and tell them to support the full 2.13% cost-of-living adjustment for MMSD staff. Feel free to use anything in this action alert to support your position. And please help spread the word by sharing this alert.
Thank you! When staff, parents and community members stand together, our students and schools win.