Q Many teachers elect to receive their pay of 12 equal monthly installments in lieu of only being paid during months that school is actually in session. They have in the past been paid a full month’s pay for the first month worked during the school year. Since the total number of teacher instruction days will not change, even though the start date will be later for the 2014-2015 school year (as per Section 37-13-62), will the district be required to limit or pro-rate the first month’s pay, or may teachers receive a full month’s paycheck?

A A school district may not pay any employee before services are actually rendered or work has been performed, as per Sections 66 and 96 of the Mississippi Constitution. As such, if a teacher or other school district employee works only a portion of the first month of his or her contract, the salary installment for that month should reflect the work actually performed. (Attorney General Opinion to Pickering, November 15, 2013); Also see Attorney General Opinion to Fairburn, October 11, 2013.