The Santa Barbara Unified School Board of Trustees approved a $2,500 stipend for employees throughout the district.
The proposal was brought forward after faculty and staff members brought concerns about the rising costs of housing, inflation, and healthcare expenses during a recent listening tour at the district’s schools.
The superintendent, select board members, union leaders, and cabinet members visited all schools and invited staff to share their concerns. Inflation was brought up frequently during these meetings, along with other topics like professional learning and curriculum needs.
The board approved a $2,000 one-time payment to employees and a $500 one-time payment for increasing healthcare costs. Additionally, substitute teachers will be receiving a $1,250 stipend per semester if they worked a total of 45 assignments over that time period.
The payments will cost more than $4,958,000. It’s funded by the Learning Recovery Emergency Block Grant.
“I have been meeting with employees and have heard firsthand how hard the cost of inflation here is, particularly for those who care for family members, whether it’s childcare or elder care. We care about our employees and their families," said Dr. Hilda Maldonado, the District’s superintendent in a press release. "We are committed to looking for ways to improve our employees' compensation and benefits, and we hope this helps to ease some of that pressure."
Employees can expect to see the check arrive next month.