HISD teachers to receive lower salary shown in 1 out of 2 offers sent, superintendent says

Mycah Hatfield Image
Saturday, August 26, 2023
High teacher salary written in offer letters will not be honored: HISD
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HISD teachers will be receiving the lower offer amount instead of the higher one sent in two offer letters that negotiate educators' salaries.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Teachers in the Houston Independent School District whose salary dropped from one offer letter to the next will not receive the higher figure.

According to their president, numerous teachers have reached out to ABC13 and the Houston Federation of Teachers, saying they have lost thousands of dollars from what they believed they would be compensated.

During an interview, a woman told Eyewitness News that she switched districts because she would make more than $100,000 as a special education teacher at a school in Houston.

RELATED: 'Bamboozled': HISD drastically cuts new hire's salary after offer letter signed, teacher says

She said she received two offer letters with a higher salary, then received a letter with a blank salary, and finally, a fourth that said she would be making $65,000. The woman and HISD human resources signed the original offer letter.

In a meeting with human resources, the woman, who asked to remain anonymous, said she was told only the final offer would be honored.

"As I understand, there were some teachers who got two different offers, and that was a mistake, and to those teachers who did, I apologize," Superintendent Mike Miles said during a news conference on Friday.

Miles said his messaging has been clear that teachers at schools designated under the New Education System, or NES, by the district would see elevated salaries.

Employees of schools that voluntarily chose to be part of NES, known as NES-aligned schools, would remain on the regular pay schedule posted online and receive a $10,000 stipend.

"What I understand, and we are still looking into it, some teachers that were NES-A got a salary that was on the NES schedule, and that's the problem," Miles said.

He said no one has lost any money, and they won't receive the elevated salaries.

Miles said he does not know how many teachers were affected by the offer letter error.

RELATED: 'It was a democratic process': HISD selects reading, math curriculums without normal teacher input

"I have gotten three or four (calls) this morning myself, but I have a staff of five staff reps, and they are getting calls individually as well, so I would say for just today alone, probably about 20," Jackie Anderson, president of the Houston Federation of Teachers, said regarding the volume of union members reaching out to them about the issue.

They have been in contact with their attorney, Christopher Tritico, who said he was not ready to discuss the union's plans.

Generally speaking, Tritico told ABC13 that teachers would file individual grievances with HISD. From there, the appointed board of managers, equivalent to the school board, would have the opportunity to resolve the issues. If the issues are not resolved, lawsuits could be filed.

"It's my position that at any point in time that I feel my members are in danger, or their rights are being violated, or there is a breach of law that is being committed by Mr. Miles, I will be calling Mr. Tritico, and I will be looking for any legal remedy that I can," Anderson said.

She encouraged any affected union members to contact the Houston Federation of Teachers.

RELATED: HISD teacher accused of 'threatening' comments at board meeting, prompting potential termination

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