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Fairfax chief uses staff cuts to raise teacher pay

Sunday - 2/23/2014, 1:14pm  ET

FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) -- Fairfax County schools Superintendent Karen Garza has a history of cutting costs in order to give teachers raises, setting the stage for her budget priorities this year.

Garza has proposed $41 million in raises for classroom teachers and staff. But the budget for 2015 also includes $96 million in cuts that would eliminate 731 staff positions.

The Washington Post (http://wapo.st/1bzV7qc ) reports this is a tactic Garza used before as superintendent in Lubbock, Texas and as second-in-command of Houston's schools.

Garza says teachers drive student achievement and raises are crucial because Fairfax salaries lags behind neighbors. The average teacher salary in Fairfax is $64,813, while the District of Columbia pays $77,512, Montgomery County pays $74,855 and Arlington pays $72,997.

Garza says she wants Fairfax to lead in pay within five years.

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Information from: The Washington Post, http://www.washingtonpost.com


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