Howard County Executive Calvin Ball and the Howard County Public School System (HCPSS) announced Wednesday that all full-time HCPSS employees will receive a $1,800 Public Education Commitment Bonus this school year, among the highest bonuses in the State.
“For our teachers and support staff, these past two years have been especially grueling, and I believe it is more important than ever to retain those committed educators who make our school system among the best in the nation,” said Ball. “I appreciate that our Superintendent and Board of Education have acted and joined me in demonstrating our gratitude for our educators as a reward for their hard work and dedication to our children.”“Every school system staff member, including teachers, health care workers, custodians, administrators and support professionals play a direct role in taking care of our 57,000 students and ensuring our 77 schools remain operational. Our employees have had to pivot multiple times during this pandemic while tending to their families, yet their commitment to nurturing and educating our students has never wavered,” said HCPSS Superintendent Dr. Michael J. Martirano. “As we contend with staff shortages, increased demands on workload, and a changing pandemic, these bonuses are just a small token of our appreciation. Thank you to County Executive Ball and the Board of Education for supporting the use of these funds to advance the bonuses.”
According to a County press release:
Bonuses will be prorated for part-time employees. Following County Executive Ball’s offer of $8 million in American Rescue Plan funding and request that the Board of Education match his commitment, the Board of Education approved the use of $8.1 million of its federal Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER) III grant to support these bonuses.