The School District of Manatee is one of the largest employers in Manatee County with roughly 7,000 teachers, principals, cafeteria workers, janitors, bus drivers and other positions, all of whom will be using a new district wide software platform by July that is advertised to rival the software of any district in the state.
The Bradenton Herald has created a database with all the salaries of Manatee school employees for the public to inspect.
Do the district’s employee salaries also rival those of other districts in the state, especially nearby districts like Pinellas, Hillsborough and Sarasota?
The average teacher salary in Manatee County is $45,778.45, according to the Florida Department of Education. Statewide, the average teacher salary is higher: $47,858.26. In Sarasota schools, that average is substantially higher, at $54,524.52 — making it the third highest in the state.
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David Miner, a Manatee school board member, was pleased the Herald published the database because, in his opinion, it shows that Manatee school salaries do not stand up against salaries of other counties.
Miner said he hopes a March 20 special referendum will be approved by voters to generate an extra $33 million for salaries and other needs.
“We have a principal in one of our charter schools who is paid more than our superintendent, Diana Greene,” Miner added.
Manatee school salaries have had very little upward movement at all recently, let alone challenge other districts, Miner added.
“If we get that $33 million, I think we will be comparable,” Miner said.
Average teacher salaries are also higher in Pinellas and Hillsborough school districts, at $47,794.63 and $49,910.18 respectively.