The Blair Oaks R-2 school district will pay its coaches more starting next school year.
The Blair Oaks Board of Education approved an extra duty salary schedule Tuesday night, presented by Blair Oaks Athletic Director Corey Felten.
The approved plan for the 2019-20 school year rewards coaches of Missouri State High School Activities Association-sanctioned sports and activities in two ways: how long a coach has already been a head or assistant coach as well as additional years of experience gained while at Blair Oaks.
Coaches in the district have earned a flat salary for their duties, calculated as a percentage of their base salary; the percentage varies based on the coaching position.
For the 2019-20 school year, coaches will enter the new salary schedule at their base percentage, plus $50 for each year they've been a head coach and $25 for each year they've been an assistant coach.
For example, Blair Oaks' varsity softball coach currently earns $4,169 — as do the varsity volleyball, baseball, cheerleading, girls track, boys track and wrestling coaches.
With the current base salary percentages, the experience multipliers would net the varsity softball coach a $1,250 initial raise next year — which would be the largest in the district, with the varsity football and varsity baseball coaches' raises rounding out the top three at $1,075 and $1,025 each.
"The base salary for each coaching position will be established in the 2019-2020 school year," a document shared Wednesday by Blair Oaks Superintendent Jim Jones states. "Coaches will submit an inventory of coaching experience of sports and activities sanctioned by MSHSAA to be verified by the district."
"The base salary for coaches hired in subsequent years will be established in the school year they begin at Blair Oaks," according to the document.
The new salary plan will reward coaches in a second, ongoing way: every further year of varsity head coach experience at Blair Oaks will net an additional $100 annual raise, and every additional year of assistant or sub-varsity coaching experience will net an additional $50 annual raise.
Felten said the new salary plan will cost around an additional $14,000 next year, with an additional cost of $3,500-$3,700 each year thereafter.
The district's total budget for the 48 coaching salaries in the 2019-20 school year listed Tuesday — including the approved changes — was $155,244.
"The district wants to honor the dedication of these individuals to our student-athletes by recognizing years of service. Although this is not at the same level as our certified staff in the classroom, it is an effort to recognize their commitment to our students/athletes and our programs," according to the document shared by Jones.
The Board of Education also approved a $500 increase to certified staff's salary base — bumping it from $35,750 to $36,250.
The school board also approved adding $5 to each salary step increase for certified staff members, meaning each increase will net $475.
Classified staff also received a 50-cent-per-hour increase to their pay.
The district's contribution per employee to health and life insurance increased 5 percent, to $6,421.92 a year per employee.
The Board of Education decided to wait to issue any bonds for the district's new high school project.
An earlier sale of bonds means the district has to pay more interest on them, though the advantage to an earlier sale is locking in interest rates.
The board did not find it likely that the United States' trade war with China would lead to a dramatic change in interest rates, though it was something they plan to stay aware of.
Jones said the district will need $750,000-$1 million for the new high school project before January.