OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — The Shawnee Mission School District (SMSD) will soon invest $3.6 million to incentivize staff to return for the 2023-24 school year. 

On Monday, the school board unanimously approved a plan to provide a one-time, $1,000 bonus for returning employees who worked during the 2022-23 school year. 

District employees are eligible to receive the bonus if they:

-Were employed before January 25, 2023.

-Completed their contract for 2022-2023 school year.

-Signed a new employment contract for the 2023-2024 school year.

This is the second year the district has offered bonuses for returning staff. Last fall, the school board also approved special retention bonuses for paraeducators and custodians throughout the district.

The new bonus initiative will cost the district roughly $3.6 million to implement and will be paid for through the federal Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER). 

District officials say returning employees can expect to receive their retention bonus by early September.