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Phoenix teachers lose thousands from expiring federal grant

Published: Mar. 4, 2022 at 9:08 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) — A federal grant that gave teachers a boost in pay will expire at the end of this school year. The grant gave teachers who’ve worked in the Phoenix Elementary School District since 2014 an extra $5,000 a year on average. The human resources director of the district says they knew this would happen. “This is the challenge of using federal funding. These grants will run out,” Dr. Victor Diaz said.

Dr. Diaz says the teachers involved in the program knew money would eventually run out. Some teachers would lose more than others. One teacher tells us she is losing out on $9,000 next year. “We’ve known this was coming for a while. But it still doesn’t mean that it doesn’t hurt,” Edison Elementary School teacher Latoya Jones said.

The district says the grant helped boost the average teacher in the program up to $75,000 a year. Those teachers are getting a base pay bump next year, but it won’t make up the difference the teachers are losing from the grant running out.

Dr. Diaz says the district is proposing a pay increase for newer teachers next year. They’re hoping every teacher will make no less than $45,000. The district understands that a pay increase may seem frustrating for some, as longer-tenured teachers are losing grant money. “65% of our staff will actually see an increase next year, but we understand its difficult for staff getting that decrease,” Diaz said.