Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools approves pay increase for bus drivers

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Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools (WGHP file photo)

Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools (WGHP file photo)

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools on Tuesday night approved a pay increase for bus drivers.

The school system released the following information:

The Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Board of Education approved a pay increase for bus drivers at its regular meeting Tuesday night. The increase will move all drivers to a minimum of $15.00 an hour. Drivers already at that level will receive a $.50 an hour increase.

The increase is an attempt to bring WS/FCS employee compensation in-line with other districts of similar size. North Carolina’s three largest districts, Wake, Charlotte-Mecklenburg and Guilford, all offer at least a minimum $15.00 an hour to bus drivers.

“The increase will help us hire and retain much needed bus drivers,” said Jevelyn Bonner-Reed, Chief Human Resources Officer for WS/FCS. “We will continue to study the pay of other groups of employees and make future recommendations to the board. It’s important for us to move quickly as we prepare for more students to return to in-person learning.”

Bus drivers are the first group of employees being studied for pay increases. Other employees that are being considered for possible changes this year include child nutrition workers, teacher assistants, custodians and occupational and physical therapists. This is part of a multi-year compensation project that will involve analysis, review and potential changes for all employee groups.

The total annual cost of the pay increase is expected to cost $445,055. The money will come from efficiency savings within the transportation budget.

The board also approved a pilot program that will pay drivers a $200 bonus for referring applicants who get hired as bus drivers.

The pay raise goes into effect on January 1, 2021.

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