ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) - An ongoing controversy over teacher pay in the Lindbergh School District could come to a head Tuesday night. That`s when the Lindbergh School Board is set to vote on the budget for the upcoming school year. The school board is set to meet in the Lindbergh High auditorium at 7:30pm tonight. Teacher salaries are set to be part of the expected budget vote.
The controversy over how much teachers are paid in the Lindbergh district has been unfolding for some time. Last month, hundreds of students walked out of Lindbergh High School in between classes to support the teachers. The students demanded higher pay for teachers and more respect for teachers from the district administration.
In the budget before the board tonight, all staff including teachers will receive a raise of 1.25%. But teachers will receive no 'step' advancements and that has teachers upset. Those increases are generally based on years of experience and education level.
Lindbergh officials admit they are behind in paying some teachers competitively but say they are doing their best to close that gap. District leaders say student enrollment in Lindbergh schools is growing significantly faster than revenues. They say they have to balance the resources needed for those additional students with giving raises to staff members including teachers. We`re told the budget set to be voted on tonight is totally balanced with no surplus.
The teachers say they will hold a rally at the high school outside of the auditorium ahead of the meeting tonight. A spokesperson for the teacher`s association says if the budget is approved tonight with only the 1.25% raise, it will be make for a "bad year." That spokesperson says if the budget is passed as it stands now, the teachers may consider unspecified "job actions."
Teachers can`t strike in Missouri but the spokesperson says other options are possible. The teachers` rally is set to start around 6:15pm.