Could the Abilene School District be increasing teacher's salaries?
Much of the recent board meeting this past Monday consisted of budget talks and discussion of salary increases.
The district's leader, Heath Burns, said teachers have received raises in the three years he's been in charge, but he says AISD could go into this next year in debt, all to stay competitive when it comes to keeping good teachers in Abilene.
A good teacher could be hard to find, so when you do you hold on to them.
That's what the Abilene ISD says it's doing with it's latest move.
"I think there's a pretty significant chance that Abilene is looking at a raise that's probably going to be three percent of our aggregate payroll," Burns said.
Meaning adding three percent more in funding to what the district already budgets for teacher salaries.
Burns said the district already pays the most of any district in the region, but extra money is a good way to get teachers here and get them to stay.
"We want to compete, at least be competitve with other urban districts throughout the state," he said.
It all sounds well and good, but could it put the AISD in the red?
"I'm still hopeful that we'll find a way to adopt a balanced budget but i think it's also a possibility that we could adopt a budget that has a slight deficit," Burns said.
He admitted that talks are just beginning on this issue.
He hopes a decision can be reached by the time the districts budget is adopted in August.
Here are the facts on those salary talks at Abilene ISD.
The district says it will have the budget approved by August 27.
If the budget is in the red at the start of the year, Burns says with some adjustments, he thinks it could end the year in the black.
Salaries make up more than 80-percent of the district's budget.