An e-mail went out this AM from the State Department of Ed to all K-12 email addresses across the state on the big Argus story on “Board making sure sales tax went to teacher pay.”
Basically, to let everyone know the Argus screwed it up.
You may have seen an article in the Argus Leader this morning indicating that the new money from the half-cent sales tax has resulted in an average teacher pay increase of about $1,000. The Department of Education did not provide that information to the newspaper. Unfortunately, the article compared data from the 2014-15 school year to data from the 2015-16 school year. So the dollar amounts that were compared in the chart that the newspaper created reflect data from BEFORE funds from the sales tax increase were available. (The Department of Education did not create the chart that ran with the article; the information is available in different locations on our website.)
What you should know: The 2015-16 school year will serve as the baseline year for measuring increases in teacher compensation. The data for 2016-17 is not yet available, so it’s too early to make comparisons. From what we have heard anecdotally, we expect the average increase to be significantly more than the $1,000 referenced in the article. But we will not know for certain until we have data from the 2016-17 school year.
A corrected version of the story is now online. We appreciate that the Argus Leader very quickly corrected the error.
Mary Stadick Smith
Director of Operations and Information
South Dakota Department of Education
They had a big chart and everything.. that’s no longer with the article, because it had nothing to do with the extra penny of sales tax.