13 teachers leave after salary snafu

August 04, 2006|by ERIN CUNNINGHAM

WASHINGTON COUNTY - Thirteen teachers who were quoted incorrect salaries last year will not be returning to Washington County Public Schools this year, according to Ellen Hayes, the school system's supervisor of human resources and teacher personnel.

Seventy-one experienced teachers new to the school system were told about one year ago that their salaries were higher than they should have been. The teachers were paid $600 to $6,000 more than their colleagues with the same experience last year, but they were told that pay will be eliminated this year.

Hayes said of the 13 teachers who left, two left to take care of older family members, six left to take jobs closer to home and one left for a job that offered a more flexible schedule.

Four of the teachers left for jobs that offered a higher salary, Hayes said.

"I think we certainly were anticipating a number of the 71 teachers would leave," said Ed Lynch, executive director of human resources. "I think we're glad it was only a total of 13 that left."


He said teachers affected by the misstatement were not held to their contracts, which would have required that they teach in the Washington County school system for one year. Six teachers who left during the school year were not penalized for that decision, he said.

"One big thing that could happen (if teachers break their contract) is that we could pull the teacher's certification in the state of Maryland," he said.

Those decisions are made on a case-by-case basis.

"It's never good to lose any teachers," Lynch said. "This particular situation, because of the way we handled it, was probably the reason that most of the teachers didn't leave."

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