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Guilford County Schools superintendent discusses district's largest budget

On June 17, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners voted on the 2021-2022 budget, which includes nearly $230 million dollars to go towards education.

GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. — School may be out for the summer, but Guilford County School leaders are hard at work figuring out how to spend budget money. 

On June 17, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners voted on the 2021-2022 budget, which includes nearly $230 million dollars to go towards education. That is the highest amount of funds approved to go towards education in nearly two decades.

Even though it has several positives for educators, the superintendent of Guilford County Schools said they still are behind some of the larger districts when it comes to incentives.

It provides $8 million for teacher salary increases, allows for a minimum $15 pay rate for nutritional workers and funds to hire 15 school nurses.

Dr. Sharon Contreras, Superintendent of Guilford County Schools, said this is a step in the right direction for educators.

"It's an encouragement, an incentive to stay right here in Guilford Schools," Contreras said.

RELATED: Guilford County Commissioners unanimously approve $675 million budget for upcoming year

Contreras said this will help with staying competitive when it comes to hiring.

"The Board of Education has been working very closely with the Board of County Commissioners to help them understand how the gap has widened in terms of competitive salaries between the larger districts, and we want to be competitive, we want to compensate our teachers and our support staff fairly," Contreras said.

The increases is not just for teachers.

"Also for the classified staff, and that's all of the thousands of employees that support students so that they get to school, that they are fed when they get to school, they drive them to school, the teacher assistants," Contreras said.

The pay raises for teachers will begin in the fall and will vary by position.

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