The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education approved an Employee Retention Incentive to recognize employees' outstanding work and encourage retention.
Under the plan, eligible CMS full-time employees will receive $2,500 and eligible part-time employees will receive $1,250 in two installments (the first in December and the second in September).
"We ask so much of our employees just in a normal year," said Board Chair Elyse Dashew. "But the past two years have been extraordinarily difficult ones for educators. We are thankful that our employees continue to show up in the service of children. All the money in the world could not adequately express our gratitude but we hope this bonus sends employees the message that we do see and appreciate their hard work."
This new CMS retention incentive is unrelated to the state-approved bonuses announced in the recently approved state budget, which are scheduled to be paid in January 2022. The CMS employee retention program is budgeted at approximately $48 million in American Rescue Plan Act-ESSER III funds.
To be eligible for the full incentive, employees must have started working at CMS on or before Oct. 31, 2021, and remain continuously employed through September 2022. The bus driver retention incentive offered earlier this year will be replaced with this new incentive program.
"This year has presented significant challenges for all of us," said Superintendent Earnest Winston. "I am delighted to offer this to support our employees whose dedication is at the core of our mission and whose commitment to providing an innovative, inclusive environment is critical to student success."
Winston said that he would decline the incentive package for himself. "There's more work to do," he said.