Kalamazoo school workers get retention bonuses as ‘thank you for job well done’

KALAMAZOO, MI – Kalamazoo Public Schools workers will get an early Christmas present: $1,500 for full-time workers and $1,000 for part-timers.

The Board of Education unanimously approved the one-time bonuses to be awarded Dec. 23.

“The rationale being, our employees have gone above and beyond to meet the needs of our students during and after the pandemic,” school board treasurer Ken Greschak said Monday, Dec. 12, at a special meeting.

Related: Kalamazoo school board considering one-time retention bonuses for current employees

“They are part of the KPS family. This retention bonus is a thank you for a job well done.”

Board members said they were thrilled to approve the bonuses, which were higher than the $1,000 for full-time workers and $650 for part-time workers initially proposed by Superintendent Rita Raichoudhuri.

The district is among others across the country that have provided retention bonuses to school workers – in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the difficulty for some districts to keep staff.

Trustee Jermaine Jackson, who has children in Kalamazoo schools, said workers deserved the bonuses for their efforts in providing “the safety and education for children of this district.”

School board president Patti Sholler-Barber said it was “an honor to give these bonuses.”

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