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Millcreek Journal

Granite School Board approves $4-an-hour increase for Educational Support Professionals

Bus drivers will among those receiving a $4-an-hour wage increase along with custodians, paraprofessionals, nutrition services workers and more. (File photo courtesy Granite School District)

An unprecedented settlement agreement between the Granite Education Association and the Granite Education Support Professional Association will increase compensation for contract and hourly Educational Support Professionals in the district. 

Bus drivers, custodians, paraprofessionals, nutrition services workers, and more will receive a $4-an-hour wage increase for the upcoming school year.

“We fully recognize that this employee group is critical in our ability to provide quality educational services for students and providing support to our licensed and administrative colleagues,” said Granite School District Chief of Staff Benjamin Horsley, in a media release.

With the onset of the pandemic, many ESP and hourly positions have been difficult to fill given competing compensations from the private sector and labor shortages in the local economy. District officials hope the increase will help retain and attract quality employees to Granite schools. Food services staffing had dozens of openings throughout the year and more than 30 custodial and maintenance positions, and more than 50 aide positions, remain unfilled.

The settlement also includes no increases in health plan premium costs for benefited employees, to help keep more money in employees’ pockets.

The budget for the upcoming school year was adopted at this meeting and includes a proposal for a small tax increase to help pay for these increases. This will require the board to go through the process of truth in taxation with an additional public hearing in August. The proposed increase is anticipated to be $73 a year on an average home within the district.

“The board and administration take their fiscal responsibility very seriously with the full understanding of the potential impact on our taxpayers,” Horsley said. “The district is committed to providing the highest quality of educational opportunities and with over 90% of our operations budget going toward personnel, providing competitive compensation in these hard to fill positions will help us achieve better quality educational outcomes for our students and families.”  λ