Rockdale County High School

CONYERS – Rockdale Public Schools will provide a one-time bonus to all its employees who did not qualify to receive the $1,000 bonus paid to K-12 teachers and other school-based support personnel.

The state Board of Education recently approved the use of federal stimulus funds to pay the one-time $1,000 bonus to teachers, and a separate bonus was provided to pre-K educators by the Department of Early Care and Learning. The school system subsequently decided to use $500,000 in CARES II funding to extend the bonus to all full-time and part-time staff members who did not receive the bonus under state requirements. Full-time employees will receive $1,000, and part-time workers will receive a partial payment. The bonuses will be paid in April.

According to the school system, this bonus is being provided to support stronger recruitment and retention of these critical positions and as a gesture of gratitude for their work and sacrifices during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I commend both Gov. Kemp and State Superintendent Richard Woods on their support for this bonus payment," said Superintendent Dr. Terry Oatts. "While this bonus includes a wide array of school and district employees, like prior instances in which the state provides some funding for salary increases, not all employees are explicitly included in this bonus, and there are some guidelines we must follow such as adjusting the bonus payment amount for specific employees who work less than full-time. As superintendent, I have always been committed to ensuring to the fullest extent possible that our RCPS employees are treated equitably. As such, I have directed our Financial Services Department to extend the $1,000 bonus payment to all full- time RCPS employees and a partial bonus payment to each of our less than full-time employees.

“These steps I have directed take into account the tremendous commitment and dedication our employees have demonstrated during this unprecedented public health crisis," continued Oatts. "From providing sustained and engaging virtual learning to now dutifully navigating a challenging blended teaching and learning environment of both virtual and hybrid in-person students, they have remained committed to pursuing world-class results for our students.”

Editor's note: This story has been updated to delete the statement that the school system would pay the FICA payroll tax for employees. The school system has found it is unable to do this.

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Editor

I have been editor of the Rockdale Citizen since 1996 and editor of the Newton Citizen since it began publication in 2004. I am also currently executive editor of the Clayton News Daily, Henry Daily Herald and Jackson Progress-Argus.

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