School Staffing

Given the academic and social challenges that students face, many local education agencies are using Covid relief money to hire more staff members and beef up training, benefits and pay for those already on the payroll. U.S. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona has encouraged districts to use Covid relief funds to address staff shortages, specifically suggesting that they increase compensation, build a cadre of substitute teachers, improve working conditions, and invest in growing the workforce.

The Burbio data shows that about 60 percent of the districts and charter schools plan to spend on teachers, counselors and interventionist, and more than a third are using it for mental health professionals. The data doesn’t make clear whether the money would go toward hiring new staffers or improve conditions for existing employees. In separate categories, two fifths of districts plan to spend on professional development and one fifth on retention and recruitment of staff.

View our regional analysis of spending plans

View our financial breakdown of spending

See state plans for investments in staff

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Graphic by Merry Alderman Design