Waynesboro increasing pay for substitute teachers

Substitute teachers in Waynesboro are getting a 43% pay raise.

At Tuesday evening’s Waynesboro Public School Board meeting superintendent Dr. Jeffrey Cassell announced the city’s schools are increasing the pay for its substitute teachers from $77 to $110 per day.

“Like many school systems, if not all, we’re having trouble finding substitute teachers,” Cassell said. “So we hope that the pay increase from $77 to $110 a day will improve our substitute pool.”

Cassell said $110 a day is comparable to other nearby school districts including Staunton and Augusta County.

Preparing to budget

During Tuesday’s meeting, Cassell said he expects to know sometime in December more about Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin’s budget and how much money the state will be giving Waynesboro.

“We may, or may not, know the local funding,” Cassell said.

This year’s budget is a little over $42 million, a 10% increase from the previous year’s budget, with almost $21 million coming from the state.

Cassel also touched on the budget priorities for the 2022 fiscal year, which begins July 1.https://b7b7e285a1434e8cff4fdf69444f64b8.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-38/html/container.html

This year, Cassell said priorities include incremployee compensation and pay raises to make it easier to retain and recruit teachers and staff.

Assistant superintendent retiring

At the end of the meeting, it was announced that assistant superintendent Vermell Grant is retiring at the end of year effective Jan. 1, 2022.

“I couldn’t have asked for a better partner in school leadership over the last nine years,” Cassell said. “She will be greatly missed. It’s been a very bittersweet time in our office the last few days.”

Waynesboro School Board member Kathryn Maneval, who agreed with Cassell, said Grant made Waynesboro a better place and shared a story about an interaction she had with Grant. When Maneval’s son was beginning kindergarten, Grant stopped what she was doing to give him a tour of Westwood Elementary, Maneval said.

“It was a very warm welcome and it kind of reassured his nervous parents that he was going to be in a good place,” Maneval said. “I’m a better person because of the things I’ve learned from you.”

Grant thanked current and previous school board members for “creating a culture” she could thrive in.

“I feel truly blessed to have had Waynesboro Public Schools as the place to live out my professional dreams and my career,” Grant said.