The Kuna school district is defending about $130,000 in raises that were given to 41 teachers and six administrators this school year.
But a Kuna Melba News analysis of the data shows that many of the numbers are deeply flawed and misleading.
As the state Legislature hammers out a public education budget for next year, several state legislators asked the state Department of Education for data related to increases in base salaries statewide. The data showed increases in salaries totaling over $21 million combined in all school districts across the state.
This comes at a time when many school districts are cutting services and asking the state to mitigate funding cuts in next year’s budget.
The Kuna school district, for example, eliminated midday transportation for kindergartners, saving an estimated $107,000 this year.
The Kuna school district also eliminated three administrative positions this year: the Kuna Middle School dean and two elementary school building administrators.
“After reducing three administrative positions as a part of cost-savings for this year,” according to a letter from Kuna superintendent Jay Hummel sent to school district employees last week, “I gave six administrators modest increases to compensate them for changes in their job title they assumed because of loss of administrative personnel.”
You can read the rest of this story, including how the numbers are misleading, on Page 12 of this week's Kuna Melba News.