Compensation at DPS
DPS is committed to attracting and retaining employees who deliver exceptional performance and commitment to our mission: Every Child Succeeds. Compensation is part of our total rewards approach that includes cash compensation, time off, benefits, retirement, and so much more.
- Pay Equity (Internal & External): DPS has robust internal pay guidelines to ensure jobs are paid fairly according to the job market and equitably within the organization. Pay practices are regularly reviewed to ensure they are legally compliant, fair, and implemented with integrity and accountability.
- Performance Based Pay: DPS values high-performing individuals and teams, we emphasize this in our pay practices.
- Transparency: DPS is committed to providing clarity in our compensation processes and communicating how compensation-related decisions are made.
- Flexibility: Compensation programs are structured to be flexible to meet the changing needs of the organization and our employees.
Setting Your Salary
Each Employee Association (union) or job either has a unique step and grade pay schedule or a salary range to determine base pay compensation. Some Employee Associations are eligible for incentives, stipends, or other opportunities for additional pay. Pay rates are set by guidelines based on agreements with our bargaining units, experience, education, and market analysis. HR validates pay rates to adhere to these guidelines during the onboarding, transfer, or promotion processes.
Pay-for-Performance and Annual Salary Adjustments
Eligible DPS employees may receive a pay increase through the annual pay-for-performance programs (LEAD, LEAP, or LIFT) or a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA). The DPS salary budget for increases is contingent on the overall financial status of the school district; and is determined by the Superintendent and approved by the Board of Education.
What is a salary structure?
A salary structure is a hierarchy of salary grades established within an organization. Each non-union job at DPS is assigned a salary grade that reflects the minimum to maximum pay for a job. The minimum is the starting pay rate for an employee with limited experience. The midpoint (also called “market rate” or “target rate”) is the average being paid by similar employers for a fully competent and experienced employee. The maximum is the point at which base salary growth is capped. Salary grades provide pay levels that are externally competitive, internally equitable, and cost effective. Visit your Employee Association Compensation page by selecting one of the icons above.
The duties and responsibilities will determine which salary grade the job will fall under. At DPS we have one compensation salary structure for non-affiliated groups such as central office jobs.
Compensation is responsible for maintaining and making updates to the structure such as job title changes, addition of new jobs or a pay grade change.
What is Base Pay vs Total Compensation?
At DPS, we refer to Base Pay as your rate of pay prior to any incentives, extra duty pay, overtime, or stipends. Total Compensation refers to your base pay plus all incentives, extra duty pay, overtime, stipends, benefits, and retirement contributions throughout the year.
For example, a first year teacher has a base pay of $45,000. If they work in a position that is eligible for the Hard to Staff incentive, they can earn an additional $2,000 annually on top of their base pay. $45,000 (base pay) + $2,000 (incentive) + $5,065 (benefit credits) + $4,500 (PERA retirement contributions) = $56,565 Total Compensation **these dollar amounts are examples only. Actual amounts will vary.**