On Thursday, various eligible educators of the Fort Smith School District have already received their $1,500 bonus payment.
The bonuses which will be paid from the national Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund budget, are expected to provide assistance to almost all teachers in Fort Smith public schools who have been working through the COVID-19 pandemic according to Notheis (2022).
According to an article published by Dale (2022), the payments will be delivered by December 15 and were approved by the school board on May 9. Charles Warren, the chief financial officer of Fort Smith Public Schools, wrote via email that qualified staff includes classroom teachers and other department-level certified staff, including but not limited to, interventionists, instructional specialists, special education coordinators, and adult education teachers. He claims that administrators at the school level, like principals and assistant principals, will also be eligible.
In an article published by Murphy (2022), some employees at schools, such as district-level administrators like department directors, will not be eligible for this reimbursement. According to Warren’s email, professionals such as nurses, police officers, and administrative assistants do not qualify because they have different pay scales.
Teachers are also set to receive a benefit from the Certified Salary Schedule, which will raise their salaries by $3,471.81 annually, a 5.89% pay increase for the 2022-2023 school year.