It is important to note that the District still honors the continuing education of its staff. Tuition reimbursement was increased from $750 to $2,000 a year for teachers who are taking courses that will result in a positive impact to their students.
For that reason, since 2012, the District has differentiated pay. Naturally, DCSD’s Highly Effective teachers receive the largest raise. Last year that equaled 5 percent.
Additionally, the system provides opportunities for DCSD to keep salaries competitive against other Districts and to rectify inequalities created by the four years of pay freezes.
It is also important to mention that if a teacher moves from one position to another and switches pay bands, this has no effect on their base salary and they are still eligible for performance pay.
Finally, in the old Step and Lane system, teachers would hit a cap and would not be able to get a raise, regardless of how hard they worked. For instance, in Cherry Creek Public Schools, that amount is $85,587. DCSD’s system rectifies this. Highly effective teachers can continue to increase their annual salary up to $100,000.
Douglas County School District does it differently because it does not want to disincentive performance.