Nevada Dems propose raises for educators and support staff

A kindergarten classroom
A kindergarten classroom(Terri Russell)
Published: Feb. 3, 2023 at 9:29 AM PST
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CARSON CITY, Nev. (KOLO) - Democrats in the Nevada State Legislature are proposing raises for educators and support staff.

$250 million will be set aside by their plan to create a matching fund to support those raises. Funding for education in the next biennium was already set to increase by a record $2 billion under a law passed in 2019.

State Democrats hope these raises will incentivize local school districts to dedicate a portion of their new funds to attracting and retaining qualified teachers and support staff.

“Nevada schools are facing record numbers of teacher vacancies, and it must be our top priority to ensure we have a qualified teacher in every classroom,” said Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro. “As education funding increases, we need to hold our school districts accountable to ensure that money is being appropriately spent to attract and retain qualified teachers in every corner of Nevada. We look forward to working to implement this proposal as part of the legislative session’s budget process.”

Others remained unsatisfied with Governor Lombardo’s education proposals.

“Although historic, we are not satisfied with the amount of K-12 education funding in Governor Lombardo’s proposed budget. In this time of record revenues, we must do more, especially for our educators and education support professionals, because there is no greater investment we can make than in Nevada’s students,” said Speaker-Elect Steve Yeager. He continued, “Therefore, we will be adding a minimum of $250 Million more to fund education, which will help to attract and retain highly qualified education professionals.”

The proposed conceptual framework for educators and support staff includes:

  • Funds that will serve as a matching program: If school districts allocate a portion of their budgets to raises, the state will match them up to a defined percentage
  • To apply for matching funds, districts will be required to certify to the state the percentage of proposed raises by employee category, the total expected cost, and a financial commitment to cover the district’s share
  • Once approved, districts will be required to submit detailed reports regarding their compliance