BENTONVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — The Bentonville School Board unanimously approved a 6.5% raise on all salary schedules for the 2023-2024 school year during a meeting April 18.

The district says that the increase will cost over $10 million annually.

“It’s important to consider the financial ramifications of a 6.5% increase,” Janet Schwanhausser, the district’s deputy superintendent and CFO, said.

The district allotted $1,649,882 from a 1.1% increase in foundation funding, $3,675,312 from a set of funding relating to the LEARNS Act, $3,304,465 from additional tax revenue because of assessment growth and $1,929,131 from anticipated savings to the new salary schedule raise.

Schwanhausser says that the current plan will allow the new salary schedule to be fulfilled without obstructing any future projects.

Board members strongly supported the raise.

“This is worth every penny that we’re going to spend for our teachers,” board member Willie Cowgur said after the 6-0 vote. “Very deserving of it. They do a phenomenal job.”