Lawrence school board to hear reports on teacher salary matrix, early childhood services

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The Lawrence school board on Monday will hear updates about the district’s work to improve teacher salaries as well as its early childhood education services.

The school board will hear two reports from district staff: one from the district’s certified teachers union, and one from early childhood educators, according to Monday’s meeting agenda.

The salary matrix subcommittee for Lawrence Education Association (LEA) has been working on comparisons of certified teacher salaries across various schools in Kansas. The comparisons are meant to help make recommendations to LEA’s negotiations team regarding horizontal movement — pay increases for teachers who achieve additional certification or levels of higher education — and vertical movement, teachers moving up the pay scales according to years of experience.

According to the meeting agenda, the committee will present an update on the comparison work in the context of newly proposed salary matrix options for staff members with significant years of experience.

Additionally, early childhood district staff will share an overview of early childhood services. There are currently approximately 500 early childhood students and families who receive support or services from programs at Kennedy Early Childhood Center, according to the meeting agenda. 

“Services begin prenatally and continue through a child that is eligible for kindergarten. Services offered range and are based on the needs of the child/family, the type of program and unique qualifying criteria,” according to the meeting agenda.

No presentation materials for the report on early childhood were provided as of Sunday afternoon, but according to the agenda memo, “the report contains information regarding our program offerings, approximate numbers of children/families who access services, an overview of funding sources, curriculum alignment, and engagement with community early childhood partners.”

• FSHS athletic field: The board will consider a recommendation to contract with B. A. Green Construction Co. for $395,290 to make improvements to Free State High School’s outdoor athletic field exterior “following reports of moisture infiltration,” according to the agenda item. “Inspections confirmed various points of moisture intrusion resulting in deterioration of the masonry cladding and wall framing throughout the facility.” The money would come from the district’s capital outlay fund.

That item is included on the board’s consent agenda — a list of items that are considered routine and usually approved with one motion, unless a board member or the superintendent requests to pull something for discussion.

The meeting will begin at 6 p.m. Monday, Dec. 12 at district offices, 110 McDonald Drive. Meetings are open to the public, livestreamed on the district’s YouTube channel and broadcast on Midco channel 26. Full meeting agendas are available at this link.

To give public comment virtually during the board meeting, email by 6 p.m. on the day of the meeting to sign up to participate by Webex video/phone conferencing.

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Maya Hodison (she/her), equity reporter, can be reached at mhodison (at) lawrencekstimes (dot) com. Read more of her work for the Times here. Check out her staff bio here.

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