Substitute teacher pay increased at Mission CISD
“This article appeared in the Jan. 28 issue of the Progress Times.”
With Mission CISD’s new increase in substitute teacher pay, they are now one of the highest paying school districts in Hidalgo County. The board of trustees approved the raise at the Jan. 19 school board meeting, making the change in pay effective immediately.
Subs without degrees will earn $100 a day, subs with degrees will earn $125 a day and subs with teaching certifications will earn $185 a day. Permanent subs, or subs who stay longer than 10 days, will receive $110 (non-degreed), $135 (degreed) and $200 (certified). The only nearby districts that pay more or equal to MCISD at all three levels are Edinburg CISD and La Joya ISD. However, Mission’s permanent certified substitute pay is higher than La Joya’s.
Deputy Superintendent for Support Services Lorena Garcia said the pandemic presents challenges in securing qualified substitutes that meet Mission CISD’s operational requirements. The pay increase is an attempt to remain competitive with nearby districts during this time when substitute teachers are harder to come by. But that problem is not unique to Mission CISD. School districts throughout the country have been experiencing a teacher and substitute shortage as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. This year, school districts in north Texas have had central office staff, principals, librarians and counselors covering classrooms and serving food in school cafeterias.
As of Jan. 19, there are a total of 315 substitutes employed at Mission CISD — 140 non-certified, 93 degreed and 82 certified. Garcia says this number changes weekly. The substitute budget for the current school year is a little more than $1.3 million. In the first semester, the district spent $578,373 on substitute teachers. With the newly approved pay, the estimated cost is at least $719,280 based on the existing 315 substitutes.
The funds for the pay increase will come from the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief grants. The federal government distributed three rounds of ESSER funds to help school districts recover from the pandemic, and the district will use ESSER II funds to pay for substitute teacher raise. MCISD had already allocated the ESSER funds to other projects, but administrators will need to readjust the budget. The district has not announced which, if any, programs will be postponed because of the reallocation.
The substitute pay increase is temporary and will last until the end of the 2021-2022 school year. The school board will then review substitute pay and the rest of the employee pay when they discuss the budget for the next school year during the summer.