PONCE – As part of the Quality Improvement project of the Head Start & Early Head Start Program of the Autonomous Municipality of Ponce (MAP), the mayor, María E. Meléndez Altieri, reported the granting of a salary increase to 80 teachers and 94 assistants of the program. The total back pay, as of January 2020, amounts to $ 173,602 for Head Start and $ 22,496 for Early Head Start.
“From Hurricane María to today, approximately 17 teachers and 31 teacher assistants have gone in search of other professional experiences of the Program. For us it is important to maintain their profession in high standards of benefits and working conditions, motivating them and recognizing the work that they have been doing in the past months specifically, “said Meléndez Altieri.
He added: “I congratulate and thank these professionals as they have demonstrated their commitment to education and to our children during their time in our Program.”
The Quality Improvement Project is divided into three general projects: Graduate Studies Scholarships, the Office of Informed Mental Trauma, and Staff Retention which includes the salary increase.
The program director, Dr. Javier Negrón stated, “We had the task of retaining our education professionals and that is why this increase of $ 150 per month was proposed to the federal government, retroactive to January 2020, to this group of employees who represent the direct service to families and children. They have a direct and active task to support and educate in good times, but also in times of crisis, disasters and other traumatic events that our enrollment faces, as they have done so far ”.
The total budget allocated for the salary increase amounts to $ 473,232 and the payment is effective in the fortnight of September 15, 2020, money that has already been deposited to the accounts of all qualified employees.