Guilford County Schools nutrition staff staged a walkout over pay

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RALEIGH — Guilford County Schools’ (GCS) school nutrition services (SNS) staff at 66 of the district’s schools participated in a walkout over pay concerns on Nov. 27.

According to a GCS press release, the district’s leadership has engaged with the staff, presenting a compensation plan that includes a 4% salary increase for SNS assistants, with 2.3% already implemented and the remainder in December.

“Our staff deserves appropriate compensation, just as our students have a right to participate in our meal programs,” the GCS press statement said.

The plan raises the starting wage from $12.25 per hour in 2021 to $15.86 per hour in 2023.

SNS managers will receive a 7% salary increase, with a minimum 4% for those held harmless. The plan raises their starting wage from $13.75 per hour in 2021 to $18.60 per hour.

Additionally, managers serving over 100 meals daily will qualify for a pro-rated quarterly bonus.

The district notes in its press release that SNS staff were excluded from the state’s 4% raise in October 2023, as they operate independently based on meal funding.

The district has committed to not increasing lunch prices since 2017-2018.

A separate statement by GCS indicated SNS staff were returning to work on Nov. 29.

“We are grateful to our hard-working employees for their decision to return,” said Dr. Whitney Oakley, superintendent. “We know they share our commitment to students’ well-being, and we look forward to continuing to serve students together.”

Oakley also thanked SNS staff who remained on the job during the walkout as well as various district staff, parents, and university partners who volunteered to make sure students received meals.

“Many of our children count on GCS for at least two meals per day, and our team came together to meet this need,” Oakley said.

About A.P. Dillon 1213 Articles
A.P. Dillon is a North State Journal reporter located near Raleigh, North Carolina. Find her on Twitter: @APDillon_