Delaware Governor Announces Significant Investments in Public Education

Delaware Governor CarneyImage via Office of the Governor Delaware

DELAWARE — Surrounded by teachers, administrators, members of the General Assembly, and advocates, Governor Carney on Tuesday announced significant investments in public education across Delaware. Investments that will be included in the Fiscal Year 2024 budget are:

  • A 3 percent raise for all who work in public education.
  • A total of a 9 percent raise for teachers.
  • An increase of $15 million to Opportunity Funding, totaling $53 million.
  • A $3 million investment in the Wilmington Learning Collaborative, totaling $10 million.

“I was raised by two educators. I know the difference a good teacher can make in the life of a student,” said Governor Carney. “That’s why teachers are central to all our efforts in education. And our goal with these investments is pretty straightforward. We want to retain and recruit the best teachers into Delaware schools. The competition for those teachers is intense, but I’m confident we can get this done.”

“We are excited by the Governor’s plans to increase funding and classroom-based support for Delaware public schools,” said Dr. Mark Holodick, Secretary of the Delaware Department of Education. “Combined with other resources that have been directed to schools during this administration, including Opportunity Funding and the Wilmington Learning Collaborative, resources for our English learners and economically disadvantaged students have positioned our schools to better meet the needs of all students. The investment in our teachers, those who work directly with our students and families, additionally demonstrates our state’s commitment to strengthen education. Increased teacher compensation positively impacts our ability to better retain highly effective educators while simultaneously puts our districts, charters schools, human resources directors and school leaders in a much better position to recruit top-notch educators. The timing of this plan is critical in that it is ahead of students graduating teacher prep programs this spring. The plan also dovetails nicely with the work of Delaware’s Public Education Compensation Committee (PECC), which not only focuses on compensation but also promotes the importance of teacher leadership and career paths that differ from our currently existing system and instead focus on recruiting the best novice teachers who can then grow in careers that include coaching, leadership and increased student achievement. All of this work highlights the direction in which our state is headed, and we are grateful for this administration’s thoughtful and forward-thinking proposals.”

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“No one becomes a teacher to make a lot of money. We become teachers to make a difference. That said, Delaware’s teachers deserve to be paid a competitive wage,” said Senator Laura Sturgeon, a former educator. “While I am honored to serve on the Public Education Compensation Committee, I recognize the urgency with which we must address the teacher shortage. That’s why I am so glad to see that Governor Carney is taking this momentous step to increase educator pay in this year’s budget.”

“Educating our children is one of the most important jobs one could ever hold and we should pay educators a salary showing that we believe it is the most important job,” said Representative Kimberly Williams. “I look forward to our continued work on the Public Education Compensation Committee.”

“On behalf of Delaware educators, I want to thank Governor Carney for taking the first meaningful step toward elevating educator pay to a respectful and professional level” said DSEA President Stephanie Ingram. “This is what we have be asking for, and it is the first of many steps that need to be taken in order to achieve respectful and professional salaries for all educational employees.  There is much work to be done, but I know that together we can make it happen.”

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