• REFERRAL AND RETENTION BONUS PROGRAM 2021-2022 SCHOOL YEAR

    November 10, 2021

    Last night the Portland Public School Board approved the following referral and retention bonus programs.

    REFERRAL BONUS

    Recognizing the pressures our school system is under due to staffing shortages, we are announcing a $750 employee referral bonus for you to help recommend and attract new colleagues to work in our schools. 

    Do you know a neighbor who might make a great custodian at your school? A friend who could be an additional support in a PPS classroom? A professional colleague who has the experience and tools to support students with special needs and/or mental health at your school?

    If the answer is yes, you are eligible to receive this referral bonus. To learn more, read the Referral Bonus FAQs below or review the full Referral Bonus Program guide.

     

    REFERRAL BONUS FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS 

    Who is eligible for the referral bonus?
    Effective November 10 through March 31, 2022, PPS employees who refers a candidate in the job classifications outlined below, who meets all the following criteria are eligible for the referral bonus:

    • Referring employee remains employed by PPS through the payment date;
    • Referring employee is designated by the candidate as the referring employee on the application for employment;
    • The referred candidate is new to PPS;
    • The referred candidate is successfully hired for the 2021-2022 school year and remains employed through a 90 day probation period. 

    The following open job classifications as qualifying an individual to be a candidate*: 

    • Custodian
    • School-based counselors
    • School-based QMHP
    • School-based social workers
    • SPED - Paraeducators
    • SPED - Educators, including CRP
    • SPED - School Psychologists

    *TOSA and Administrator positions are not included. 

    How much is the referral bonus?
    The referral bonus for eligible employees is $750 per successful candidate.

    When and how will I receive the referral bonus?
    The referral bonus will be paid to eligible employees no later than the second payroll date immediately following the end of the candidate’s probationary period. 

    The referral bonus will be paid as a separate line item on the corresponding paycheck.

    Will my referral bonus be taxed?
    PPS will withhold from any amounts paid under the referral bonus any income tax or other amounts as required by law, including any mandatory contributions under PERS or OPSRP.

    How long is the candidate’s probationary period?
    The candidate’s probationary period for the purposes of the referral bonus only is 90 days.

    The candidate I referred did not list my name on their application but I referred them, can I still be paid?
    Applicable job postings include language and directions for candidates regarding how to indicate the employee that referred them. They must follow those instructions in order for you to be eligible for the referral bonus.

    How do candidates indicate on their application that I referred them?
    When a candidate applies for a job, in step 8 - Referrals, candidates need to answer the question, “How did you learn of the job” and select “Current Employee”. There is a field titled “Specific Referral Source” where they need to enter your name. 

    How do I verify the candidate listed my name on their application?
    If you have referred a candidate to an eligible classification, please confirm directly with the candidate that they provided your name per the instructions on the job posting and listed above in these FAQs.

    How will I know if the candidate I referred was hired?
    Upon successfully being hired, Human Resources will send the referring employee an email to inform them the candidate they referred was hired.

    How will I know if the candidate I referred completed their 90 day probationary period and I will receive my referral bonus?
    Upon the candidate's successful completion of their 90 day probationary period for purposes of the referral bonus, the referring employee will receive an email notification informing them of their referral bonus. This communication will include the expected timeline for payment.


    RETENTION BONUS FOR PARAEDUCATORS

    The start of this school year has been among the most challenging in our collective experience. The consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic have resulted in labor shortages across many industries. Staffing shortages are also true in school districts across the country, including ours, which impact on our ability to effectively serve and support students and our school communities. Paraeducators play a particularly important role in our schools, and we are observing that your unit is being particularly affected by this shortage. 

    We would like to tangibly demonstrate our deep appreciation for your dedication to our students and school communities this year, as a PARAEDUCATOR and therefore are pleased to share that you will be receiving a $3,000 retention bonus for your dedicated service.

    To learn more, read the Retention Bonus FAQs below or review the full Retention Program guide.

    RETENTION BONUS FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS 

    Who is eligible for the retention bonus?
    Paraeducators who are employed and actively working, or are on protected leave, as of January 27, 2022 are eligible for the First Retention Bonus. Paraeducators who receives the First Retention Bonus and remains employed and actively working, or are on protected leave, as of through the end of the 2021-2022 school year will receive the Second Retention Bonus.

    How much is the retention bonus?
    Employees who are eligible for both retention bonuses would receive $3,000.
    Eligible employees will receive $1,500 for the First Retention Bonus and $1,500 for the Second Retention Bonus which is prorated based on FTE (paraeducators are considered full-time at 0.938 FTE). 

    When and how will I receive my retention bonus?
    The retention bonus will be paid no later than the second payroll date immediately following the retention dates (January 27, 2022 and end of employee’s 2021-2022 school year).

    The retention bonus will be paid as a separate line item on the corresponding paycheck.

    Will my retention bonus be taxed?
    PPS will withhold from any amounts paid under the retention bonus any income tax or other amounts as required by law, including any mandatory contributions under PERS or OPSRP.