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Parents And Teachers React To Hillsborough County Schools Salary Increase

TAMPA, Fla. (CW44 News At 10) - Hillsborough County teachers could soon be getting a one-year pay raise.

The district agreed on an increase that would range from about $800 to $2,000 for instructional employees for this school year.

"It's just not enough overall," said Nicole Baldwin, a teacher in Hillsborough County Schools.

This is what many teachers all over Hillsborough County are saying about the tentative district-wide pay increase.

"No contract negotiations, or no settled negotiation until February and then what's offered is not what we were expecting, it kind of feels like a slap in the face," said Baldwin.

The increase announced Monday is only for the 2021-2022 school year and ranges between $799 and $2,200.

It's being given to Hillsborough County teachers, counselors, school psychologists and social workers.

"We haven't had a cost of living increase in years, so as prices of gas rise, as prices of rent rise, as everything rises, we are still back where everything was five years ago," said Baldwin.

Baldwin, says she's upset that it took so long for the district to come up with the increase for the school year, and she says the amount of money they are giving teachers doesn't compensate for the amount of work they do.

"This year we are having to deal with kids being quarantined constantly left and right, having to give them makeup work, or work at home or work on canvas, as well as teaching our kids in person," said Baldwin.

Baldwin says even with the small increase, it won't make much of a difference.

"I actually do Uber Eats as a second job on the side, plus I've got kids at home, so it is hard," said Baldwin.

The district states the pay increase agreement still has to be approved by the Hillsborough County School Board. One parent, Brooke Elkins, says if teachers feel unappreciated, it'll eventually impact students.

"Teacher pay impacts teacher morale. Teacher morale is going to impact your attitude, your ability to do your job at the best of your ability," said Elkins.

She hopes the district makes some major financial changes for its employees.

"I don't think it's what they deserve, I don't think it's what they are owed," said Elkins.

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