The minimum wage for support personnel in the 2016-2017 school year will jump to $12 per hour, up from the previous minimum of $10 an hour. Those who already earn $12 per hour will receive an additional dollar per hour starting next school year, and those who make $13 or $14 will also see an increase of a few percentage points, depending on their current salary.
The change will impact employees such as groundskeepers, delivery truck drivers, custodians and food service assistant managers.
"[The board] understands that we have a lot of employees, especially support personnel, who live in the district. They're parents or grandparents of our students. So I think our board is very much on board with the impact that [wage increase] can have on the students we serve," said Shelley Potter, president of the San Antonio Alliance of Teachers and Support Personnel. The alliance represents about 7,000 SAISD employees.
The increase now puts SAISD on the high end of wages for support personnel in the area. But Potter said the long-term goal is to push the district's minimum wage up to $15 per hour, raising it by a dollar per year over the next four years.
"Our hope is that will now push other school districts to increase their minimum wage for district employees to move up and match what San Antonio ISD is doing," she said.
Teachers, librarians and nurses will also have a higher starting salary, with a bump from $50,000 to $51,500 per year.
The San Antonio Alliance of Teachers and Support Personnel and the COPS/Metro are the two groups that pushed for the wage increase. COPS/Metro was also one of the groups behind the City of San Antonio and Bexar County raising the minimum wage for their workers in 2015.
The San Antonio ISD School Board approved a pay increase that will raise the minimum wage for support personnel up to 20 percent.