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Pay Raises Take Effect as Prop 123 Funds Begin to Arrive in School Districts

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The Arizona Republic
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Funds from the education spending initiative, Proposition 123, began flowing to state school districts last week. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, pay raises have taken effect for many teachers and staff members.

Flagstaff Unified School District officials have used $1.65 million to boost salaries about 3.5 percent. Faculty and staff in the Kingman Unified School District will also receive a 3.5 percent raise.

Statewide, about $224 million was distributed to schools last week before the end of the 2016 fiscal year. More than three-quarters came from the state land trust and the rest from the general fund.

Voters passed Prop 123 in May, which will increase education spending by $3.5 billion over the next decade. Even with the funds from Prop 123, however, Arizona’s per-pupil spending still remains at 48th in the nation behind Oklahoma.

Ryan joined KNAU's newsroom as executive producer in 2013. He covers a broad range of stories from local, state and tribal politics to education, economy, energy and public lands issues, and frequently interviews internationally known and regional musicians. Ryan is an Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a frequent contributor to NPR.
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