Unit 5 – Did ESSER Funds Inflate Salaries?

By: Diane Benjamin

The chart below came from Open The Books. The number of employees and total payroll reported to Teachers Retirement Fund also came from Open The Books.

The number of students each year came from this story – note enrollment DECREASED: https://blnnews.com/2022/03/04/unit-5-enrollment-is-decreasing/

Average salary is just Math.

Even with enrollment down, salaries saw a HUGE jump. What happened in 2020?

Did Unit 5 use ESSER Funds for wage increases? ESSER was suppose to be Emergency Relief Funds so schools could continue to educate students. Remember remote learning?

Unit 5 wants a tax increase now. Did they increase salaries with “free” money and now they need yours to pay the inflated salaries?

Enrollment is down, employees are down, total payroll is up. Unit 5 needs to account for where ESSER funds were spent before putting a referendum on the ballot to make property taxes even more unaffordable.

On the left are the top salaries for 2019. One the right are 2020. All data can be seen here: https://www.openthebooks.com/members/employer-detail/?Id=71391&tab=1&Year_S=2020&PG=1

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4 thoughts on “Unit 5 – Did ESSER Funds Inflate Salaries?

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