HomeAtlanta NewsASD refused to give state-funded bonus to teachers after Georgia leaders’ announcement,...

ASD refused to give state-funded bonus to teachers after Georgia leaders’ announcement, but they might change the decision

Atlanta, Georgia – Earlier this week, Georgia’s Republican Governor Brian Kemp announced that the state will give up to $1,000 Christmas bonus to all Georgia state employees, including teachers and school staff. According to the Gov. Kemp announcement, the bonus will go to over 300,000 people in Georgia.

Despite state leaders’ commitment and dedication to helping and supporting Georgians, the Atlanta Public School system sent an email to its employees saying that the bonus was included in their December 14 paycheck as a holiday retention bonus and that the district intended to use the additional funds to backfill their budget. This decision sparked a lot of debate and criticism from state leaders, including Georgia State School Superintendent Richard Woods, who immediately intervened in regards to this nonsense decision.

Hours later, the Atlanta Public School system announced they are re-evaluating the initial decision and will wait for further instructions on how to proceed.

What happened?

Soon after the Atlanta Public School system emailed its staff, the state’s school superintendent called the district’s choice “unthinkable” and “confusing” in a letter. He questioned why they weren’t giving their teachers the $1,000 retention bonus the governor announced recently. This prompted APS to revise their decision, as they later confirmed in a letter to Channel 2.

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Atlanta Public Schools explained that their goal was to give a bonus to dedicated teachers and staff before the holiday break, making sure to use taxpayer money wisely. They had already given a bonus on December 15th and planned to distribute any extra funds from the governor’s proposal once they got more details, especially regarding who should get the bonus.

Georgia State School Superintendent Richard Woods expressed his surprise at the district’s choice and how they planned to use the state funds meant for the retention bonus. Woods found it strange that APS claimed to have predicted the exact timing and amount of the bonus, which hadn’t been finalized or announced when the district made its own payments. He noted this didn’t match the usual schedule of past retention payments.

State employees are set to get their bonuses by the end of the month. The funds for teachers are also due to reach school districts by then, but it will be up to the districts to decide when to pass these funds to teachers and staff in the future.

Leander Thorne



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