Dripping Springs ISD talks bonuses for employees

By Megan Wehring 

DRIPPING SPRINGS -— Dripping Springs ISD (DSISD) is considering giving all employees a bonus this year. 

As the district still faces staffing shortages, the trustees considered an employee incentive resolution on Oct. 25. Last December, the board approved a lump sum payment of $500 for staff through a surplus from the 2019-2020 budget. 

“I’m hearing from teachers across the district that this is a harder year for our teachers and administrators than last year,” said Joanna Day, board vice president. “I know that we really take seriously our obligation to have a healthy fund balance. It would be nice to do more than we did last year, even if it is a nominal amount like $25 extra just to acknowledge our staff that we know this is a harder year … I would like to see some numbers between $750 and $500.”

Nutrition services, custodial and transportation staff are critically low, board member Stefani Reinold said. The district is also concerned about the shortages in after-school childcare staff, which is causing a limit on how many students can participate. 

“I think one step in a recruitment plan that is really important is to retain and watch the morale of the staff who are here with us,” said Tiffany Duncan, executive director of human resource services. “The focus is retention and those dollar amounts go a long way.”

The proposed resolution was not up for a vote on Oct. 25 but the board is set to meet again on Nov. 15.

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Megan Wehring graduated from Texas State University in May 2020 with a bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. Wehring has reported for the Hays Free Press/News-Dispatch for a year, covering all things local. This includes city council meetings, town events, education and human interest stories. Previously, Wehring worked at KTSW FM-89.9 (Texas State University's official radio station) for two consecutive years. She was a news reporter, assistant news director and monthly segment producer during her time at KTSW. Wehring is passionate about the local reporter aspect. With a heart for storytelling, she believes that journalists are equipped to share the stories that are most important to the community.

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