McHenry High School – Grade School Consolidation Costs

I’ve run the increased cost side of the numbers for merging McHenry Grade School District 15 and Wonder Lake’s Harrison School District 36 with McHenry High School District 156 and the numbers verify the judgment of the seven school board candidates Wednesday night.

When asked if they favored consolidation, as proposed Democratic Party Governor Pat Quinn, the answers were

“No,” “No,” “No,” “No,” “No,” “No,” “No.”

Seeking election to the District 156 High School Board for the first time are Timothy Byers, Darnell Qualls and Tracy Simon. All turned thumbs down on consolidation of school districts, as did the other four candidates for the board who took part in the League of Women Voters candidates' night.

When I calculated the addition cost that bringing grade school teacher salaries up to those enjoyed by Crystal Lake’s High School District 155 teachers, the number was an extra $27 million.

I didn’t know how to calculate the savings from fewer administrators, but Quinn estimated the total to be $100 million statewide.  Would it be even a million dollars savings in District 155?


This part of the school report card shows average salaries in District 15 and compares them to the statewide average.

Elementary school teachers in McHenry District 15 earn an average of $53,496   a year, according to its 2010 School Report Card. (The link can actually be found on the front page of the district’s web site.)

Harrison School District's salaries are shown on the Report Card along with a lot of other data.

In Harrison, the figure is $46,653.  You can see the whole report card here.

The weighted average of the two is $52,853.

If you are into source data, it’s below:

Average salaries and number of teachers

  • McHenry High School District 156 – $68,228 – 158 teachers
  • McHenry Grade School District 15 – $53,496 – 282 teachers
  • Harrison Grade School District 36 – $46,653 – 29 teachers

The average McHenry High School teacher salary is $68,228. That is $14,732 more than the average elementary school teacher's salary in its feeder districts.

So, if we subtract the average grade school salary ($53,496) from the average high school salary ($68,228) the difference is $14,732.  (The link to the high school 2010 School Report Card can be found here.)

With a total of 311 elementary school teachers, the total salary differential is $4,581,652.

Not as much as for District 155 to the south, but still a hefty number.


McHenry High School – Grade School Consolidation Costs — 3 Comments

  1. Why would you need to bring mchenry elementary teachers up to Crystal Lake High school teachers salaries?

  2. There are 311 grade school teachers and 158 high school teachers. That means the grade school teachers would control the bargaining unit.

    It is reasonable to assume they would want to be paid as much as the high school teachers.

    \My belief is that collective bargaining would bring their salaries up to McHenry High School’s salaries, an increase of $14,732 for the average grade school teacher.

  3. Not all teachers are created equal. The idea of equal pay for a kindergarten teacher and a high school honors class teacher is one of the most stupid ideas of which I’ve heard. Even equal pay for teachers in the same subject is dumb.

    First, you decide what the teaching position is worth. Then you buy the best teacher you can get for that pay.

    There are too many PhDs teaching remedial and basic courses. School districts provide money for them to improve their education, and then the teachers expect the school district to pay them more because they have additional degrees.

    “Highly-qualified” doesn’t necessarily mean highly qualified! or worth what they are being paid. Salaries and benefits are unaffordable and unsustainable!

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