HOUSTON — A pay increase for Houston Independent School District teachers was a big topic of discussion during a board meeting Thursday.
HISD Superintendent Millard House II presented a budget to the board with a proposed plan of teachers getting a 7 percent pay hike next year.
HISD teachers welcome a raise, but they said the 7 percent increase isn't nearly enough and wouldn't add up to much in the end.
"It's not enough to make a substantial difference in the lives of teachers," said Coretta Mallet-Fontenot English teacher HISD.
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Mallet-Fontenot has been an English teacher with HISD for 23 years.
She says the pay at HISD is making it hard for many teachers to stay with the district. Some are already looking for a job elsewhere.
"I would love to stay, but HISD does not pay me enough money to have an affordable living. I can barely afford rent," said Mallet-Fontenot.
The local teachers union says some teachers were discouraged to hear about the increase, considering the cost of living keeps rising.
"They left feeling kind of disappointed that was lower than what the superintendent said. They said originally $10,0000," said Jackie Anderson the President of the Houston Federation of Teachers.
Bottom line the teachers hope the district gives them a bigger increase that makes a difference in the lives of teachers.
"Respect is just like love. You can say it but you have to show me and put it in my check," said Mallet-Fontenot.
Teachers are hoping the school district uses the $300 million surplus money recently found to give them a bigger raise.
The plan presented on Thursday is not set in stone. A budget workshop is scheduled for later this month.
To receive the stipend, teachers have to meet certain qualifications, according to HISD representatives.