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Roanoke County schools adds early dismissals, substitute pay raises

Roanoke County Public School Board members had teachers at the top of their minds during a work session Tuesday.
Roanoke County Public School Board members had teachers at the top of their minds during a work session Tuesday.

ROANOKE COUNTY, Va. – Roanoke County Public School Board members had teachers at the top of their minds during a work session Tuesday. Several changes were made to ease the stress they’re under during these unprecedented times.

Starting the week of October 15, teachers will have one day off or one two-hour early dismissal every week until winter break.

Here are the dates affected by this change:

  • Oct. 15: School closed (teacher workday from home)
  • Oct. 20: Two-hour early dismissal
  • Oct. 27: Two-hour early dismissal
  • Nov. 2: Schools closed for Election Day
  • Nov. 10: Two-hour early dismissal
  • Nov. 17: Two-hour early dismissal
  • Nov. 24-26: Schools closed for Thanksgiving
  • Dec. 1: Two-hour early dismissal
  • Dec. 8: Two-hour early dismissal

Some days schools are closed for other reasons like teacher workdays or election days.

The board also changed an early dismissal November 24, the day before Thanksgiving, to an additional holiday for everyone.

The goal is to allow staff time to do things like catch up on work, meet with students and parents, or get the COVID-19 vaccine booster shot.

The School Board also increased substitute teacher pay as well with the goal to entice substitutes to work more days and hopefully get new ones applying.

Substitute teachers, degreed and non-degreed, will see a $40 increase, which is $140 and $125 respectively.

Instructional assistants’ pay (degreed or non-degreed, elementary or secondary) increases to $110.

“This should put us far above our surrounding localities. I’m glad we were able to do it even if it’s just for this year and it’s something we can talk about next year as well,” said a board member Tuesday.

The pay changes are possible because of extra money left over in the budget this year due to difficulties finding substitutes.

All of these changes are for the 2021-2022 school and will be evaluated ahead of the 2022-2023 school year.

Click here to watch the full work session.


About the Author:

McKinley Strother joined the WSLS 10 News team in June 2020. He anchors 10 News at 6 and 11 on Saturdays and Sundays and you'll also catch him reporting during the week.