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Morgan County School System Employees Could Make More Money As Fast Food Workers, Local Advocate Says | New

Some employees in the Morgan County school system may make more money working in fast food restaurants than working as paraprofessionals, bus drivers, or cafeteria helpers.

A local woman is asking the Morgan County Board of Education (BOE) to advocate for higher wages for classified positions in the school system, arguing that the current pay scale is unlivable.

Dr Claudia Crenshaw, a psychiatric nurse practitioner who lives in Buckhead, appeared before the BOE on Monday evening to argue that some employees in the school system are underpaid and in urgent need of a raise.

“The starting salary for a paraprofessional is only $ 9.14 an hour,” Crenshaw said. “Arby’s has a sign offering new employees $ 13 an hour. “

Crenshaw also noted that fast food restaurants like Wendy’s and McDonalds pay higher hourly wages, up to $ 15 an hour, than what is offered to paraprofessionals and other school system employees for classified positions.

“Everyone who works in the school system is an important part of our community and the salary should reflect that,” Crenshaw told the BOE. “I don’t think the people of the county have a clue that these are the types of salaries that we offer our ranked people… I wanted to be the drummer to help spread the word about this.”

In an interview with the Morgan County Citizen, Crenshaw said she would like to see starting salaries for classified positions increase by 50%.

“I would love to see at least $ 15 an hour,” Crenshaw said. “There are people who want to work in our school system and live in our community but cannot afford to work here or live here. It is not fair.

Crenshaw noted that paraprofessionals, who serve as classroom teaching assistants, have the lowest starting salaries of any classified position in the school system.

“This is not a living wage for someone who has the responsibility of a paraprofessional to the children, families and professionals of Morgan County,” Crenshaw said in a letter to the BOE. “I have attached the classified salary scale as well as the job description of a paraprofessional, the only position on the classified salary scale that is equipped to manage a classroom for a teacher when she is not. in the room. “

Crenshaw acknowledged that since the BOE approved the new budget at Monday night’s meeting, the salary increases may not materialize this year, but she is hopeful that action will be taken in the future.

“I know the budget is set for the next academic year, but I would like to ask the board to review graded salaries, especially paraprofessionals, and ask the county commission to budget to pay these employees. a fair wage, so they can afford to continue living and working here in Morgan County, ”Crenshaw said.

“Our county is unique in Georgia in many ways, including our progressiveness in our history. I love the rural environment and the jewel of Morgan County charter schools. I know we can get wages up and more than anything it can involve educating the citizens of Morgan County because my experience in Morgan County has always been doing the right thing.

BOE President Andy Ainslie III has tasked two board members to look for possible future salary increases.

“Thank you for bringing this to us,” Ainslie told Crenshaw. “I would charge our budgetary committee [BOE Members Brad Hawk and Dr. Forest Padgett]. We are always looking to make sure that we take care of our employees. There will be nothing for this year, but I am counting on you, for you all to evaluate it.

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