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Copperas Cove ISD to offer better pay to bus drivers, substitute teachers

Published: Sep. 15, 2021 at 12:12 PM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - The Copperas Cove Independent School District School Board on Tuesday unanimously approved better pay for school bus drivers and substitute teachers.

Bus drivers received an hourly pay increase from $14.65 per hour to $18 per hour. They will also receive a $250 incentive after working 30 consecutive workdays in a semester for the 2021-2022 school year. Drivers will be eligible to earn the $250 incentive twice a year, once during each semester, the school district said.

The pay increase is retroactive for bus drivers to the start of the 2021-2022 school year.

Substitute teachers who do not have a degree will now earn $105 per day, an increase from the current $75 per day. Substitute teachers with a bachelors degrees will now receive $115 per day, up from $100 per day. Those with a college degree are entitled to an additional increase to $130 per day if they are hired for a long-term position, the district said.

A certified teacher working as a long-term substitute will now earn $180 per day, up from the current $150 a day. The pay increases for substitute teachers are retro-active to September 13, the district said.

Pat Fox, who is now in a long-term substitute position said she is now busier than she has been in most other years. She is even turning down opportunities.

“(The raises) will make a difference,” Fox said.

Copperas Cove ISD bus drivers will also continue to receive a $200 referral incentive for the recruitment of drivers who work for six consecutive months with the school district.

CCISD pays for the new drivers’ Class B Commercial Drivers’ Licenses after one full year of employment. Candidates must possess a Class B CDL, P&S endorsements, and complete a 20-hour Department of Public Safety certification class for which the fee is paid by CCISD. Drivers must also pass a background check, driver record history check, and annual physical.

The district said bus drivers are guaranteed a minimum of five hours per day and a free employee-only health plan.

“Being a school bus driver may be one of the most underrated jobs out there,” said CCISD Director of Transportation Gary Elliott.

“Think about it; they are entrusted with the important task of taking the community’s most precious cargo to and from school every day to learn. It’s a respectable role, and it comes with more-than-respectable benefits.”

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