Madison County teacher reacts to statewide pay raise

Published: May. 12, 2021 at 8:24 AM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Last week Governor Ivey made it official. Public school teachers, support staff, and higher education officials will get a 2% pay increase starting in fiscal year 2021-2022.

Governor Ivey said she realizes that teachers are vital.

“As we head into the summer months, and the pandemic continues to ease, we need to do everything we can to support our teachers and educational support staff to ensure that we can fully return to classrooms in the fall. Alabama schools have shown the rest of the nation that it is possible to be safely back in the classroom, while carrying on the important work of providing Alabama’s children a chance for a promising future,” Governor Ivey said. “I look forward to continually offering my support to ensure that Alabama students remain on track and moving ahead.”

This pay increase wasn’t something she did alone. Alabama lawmakers passed a bill to make it possible before Governor Ivey signed it into law.

For Will Martin who teaches AP US History at Hazel Green High School, he said for him this is more than just a bump in his paycheck. Martin said as someone with an army background he’s used to having to work as a team.

“We do it for the soldier to the left and right of us, but here in a school, you do it for the teacher to the left and right of you, also in front of you. You just take care of each other,” Martin said.

Martin said that’s exactly what teachers did and will continue to do in the next school year.

“With getting tabbed as being essential that gave our staff the motivation to know we have a job that needs to get done. There’s been a lot of not knowing with the pandemic, but our administration has done a great job about informing us,” he said.

Martin also said it’s nice to know leaders in the state care too.

“I can sum it up in one word and that’s being appreciated. It feels good our gratification comes from our students. I think with every teacher when you walk in here and you see the faces and you see the little victories that happen in the classroom that gives you gratification,” Martin said. “When you have the governor giving you a raise, regardless of the amount of a raise it will make you feel appreciated.”

Martin said it’s been a long year and he’s looking forward to the end of the school year.

“From governor to everybody down they see fit to give us a raise and say we see what you are going through and I want to take care of you,” Martin said.

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