Arkansas Department of Education Division of Elementary and Secondary Education LEARNS Teacher Minimum Salary and Raise Fund

Memo Information

Memo Number
Memo Date
Memo Type
Fiscal & Administrative Services
Regulatory Authority
Act 237 of 2023; Ark. Code Ann. ยง 6-17-2403
Response Required
General Business Managers; Superintendents

Primary Contact Information

Secondary Contact/s Information

Memo Text

Act 237 of 2023, the LEARNS Act, amended Ark. Code Ann. § 6-17-2403 to require classroom teachers to be paid a minimum base salary of $50,000 beginning in 2023-24. Teachers making above $50,000 in 2022-23 shall receive a minimum salary increase of $2,000 in 2023-24. Funding will be provided in the 2023-24 school year to increase teachers making $48,000 or below in 2022-23 to the $50,000 minimum, and to increase teacher salaries of $48,001 or greater by $2,000. Funding has been calculated based on each school district’s 2022-23 cycle 1 budgeted base salaries.

To qualify for the LEARNS Teacher Minimum Salary and Raise Funds in 2023-24, districts must meet the following requirements:

  • Revise each teacher contract by the 2023-24 school year to require each teacher to be employed at least one hundred ninety (190) school days each year,
  • Not adopt a personnel policy or incorporate terms into a personnel contract that provide more rights to personnel than those provided under state law in effect during the term of the personnel contract, 
  • Not have a waiver of teacher salary requirements,
  • Be open for on-site, in-person instruction for at least one hundred seventy-eight (178) days; or one thousand sixty-eight (1,068) hours, and
  • Utilize an amount of state funds equal to eighty percent (80%) or more of the amount allocated for school-level personnel salaries, according to the adequacy funding matrix recommended by the Senate Committee on Education and the House Committee on Education for the previous school year, for teacher salaries and teacher raises.  Districts can monitor their progress towards the 80% requirements by going to the APSCN District Information Report page.

If meeting the requirement of this section would impact student safety or potentially cause a school district to go into fiscal distress under the Arkansas Fiscal Assessment and Accountability Program, § 6-20-1901 et seq., the public school district may apply to the State Board of Education for a waiver from this requirement.

Attached are preliminary allocations for the LEARNS Teacher Minimum Salary and Raise Funds.

LEARNS Teacher Minimum Salary and Raise Funds shall be expended only for teacher salaries and benefits.  The first disbursement of funds to qualifying districts will be in July 2023.  A final disbursement will follow later in the fall.  The Revenue Code for LEARNS Teacher Minimum Salary and Raise Funds is 32205, fund 2001.

The exact amount a district receives for LEARNS Teacher Minimum Salary and Raise Funds must be transferred before year-end to the teacher salary funds with accounts 69315 and 52205.  The journal entry required to make this transfer from fund 2001 to fund 1000 is as follows:

DR          2001 5200 000 000 00            69315

CR          2001                                                            01010 (CASH)

DR          1000                                         01010 (CASH)

CR          1000                                                           52205

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