After 2018 referendum, IPS gives raises to teachers, service workers

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A year after voters approved a referendum to raise taxes for operating costs, Indianapolis Public Schools Board on Tuesday night approved raises for teachers and service workers.

The raises totaling more than $31 million would take effect by year’s end.

Teachers and service workers had previously approved a contact adopted by the board during a meeting at Arlington Middle School.

Services workers with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees would receive salaries of up to 7.4%.

A visual presentation to the board indicated teachers the minimum starting salary would be $45,200 in the first year and $47,800 in the second year. The maximum salary would be $82,800 in the first year and $90,000 in the second year.

The minimum raise for a teacher is $2,600. The maximum raise is $9,400 in the first year and $4,200 in the second year.

IPS news release

Here is the news release from the district spokeswoman:

(Nov. 12, 2019) – The Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) Board of School Commissioners unanimously approved the largest teacher pay increase in the district’s history with the ratification of the latest Indianapolis Education Association (IEA) bargaining agreement.

The Board also approved the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) contract.

Together, these two-year agreements not only include increased compensation for district teachers, but also service workers, such as custodians, and food service and transportation workers.

The overall estimated investment for teachers, certified staff and service workers between both contracts is $31 million. In addition to increasing pay, IPS will continue to be efficient in managing operating expenses to sustain pay increases long term.

“IPS is committed to ensuring our workers receive the best compensation possible to bring workers in line with market rate,” said IPS Superintendent Aleesia Johnson. “While we’re not where we want to be, we are moving in the right direction and will continue the push to reward our workers for the remarkable work they do to support the students and families of the district.”

IPS began addressing compensation improvements in December 2018 with raises and bonuses for eligible teachers and service workers. Efforts continue to shift salaries to market rate to solve for previous pay freezes.

“The IEA is very appreciative of Superintendent Aleesia Johnson and the IPS Board of School Commissioners for keeping the promise to increase compensation and benefits with the referendum monies from the November 2018 election,” said IEA President Ronald Swann. “We, the certified staff and IEA members, supported IPS in this endeavor to pass the referendum that was presented to the community to increase teacher funding and are grateful to see substantial pay increases for all teachers.”  

“AFSCME Council 962 and Local 661 are pleased with the progress being made to foster a more cooperative relationship between the dedicated workers of IPS and management,” said Vincent Bibbs, local AFSCME president. “In the latest negotiations, action was taken to restore key components of the wage step structure and we are thankful to see all represented units addressed in this contract.”

Details of the IEA and AFSCME contracts: 

  • 2-year contract
  • Estimated investment is $30 million
  • Pay Increases
    • New ranges raise starting pay and maximum pay:
      • Year 1: $45,200 to $82,800
      • Year 2: $47,800 to $90,000
  • Raises are based on market adjustment, using level of experience to solve for previous freezes or compression of the model over years.
    • Minimum raise: $2,600
    • Maximum raise: Year 1 – $9,400; Year 2 – $4,200
    • Differences in amounts are based on effectiveness, years of service, high need/hard to staff subject areas (dual credit, STEM, SPED) 


  • 2-year contract
  • Estimated investment is $1.2 million
  • All groups shifted to market adjustment
    • Custodial: 7.4 percent or average increase of $2,350
    • Food Service: 1.4 percent or average increase of $450
    • Paraprofessional: 3.7 percent or average increase of $1,100
    • Transportation: 2.7 percent or average increase of $1,000

Raises are expected to go into effect before December 31, 2019.

If you have any questions, please contact Carrie Cline Black, IPS communications manager, at 317-605-3797.

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