TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — A group of Baltimore County teachers lined up to get their paychecks Wednesday after a two-week delay school officials blamed on the U.S. Postal Service.
First, they dealt with a pandemic and then a ransomware attack hit the county’s public school system. Now, some employees are just glad to have their paychecks in-hand while others said the process has been frustrating as bills come due.
“It’s pretty frustrating,” said Richard Johnson, an early intervention assistant at Essex Elementary School.
One by one, teachers and staff members walked into the Baltimore County Public Schools administration building to pick up the checks that they should have had two weeks prior.
“I had Christmas and then rent on the first, so you know I’m pretty backed up,” Johnson said.
School officials told WJZ the December 30 paychecks were mailed out on time but a number of contract employees never got them. They believe it was a postal issue.
Those with direct deposits for their paychecks were not affected, the district said.
“(I) finally received my paycheck after all this time. It feels a little rewarding,” Tyler Myers, an educational assistant at Fort Garrison, said.
Not everyone was so lucky. Matthew Barker, a building service worker at Dundalk High School, said he was told his check wasn’t at the schools headquarters.
“I guess play the waiting game again, but I don’t know how much longer they want me to wait… what am I supposed to do?” he said.
Postal workers nationwide have struggled to keep up with high demand.
The postal service told WJZ records were set in the 2020 holiday season with more than one billion packages delivered. In a statement, the agency said shippers across the board were challenged with airlifts and trucking capacity for moving historic volumes, causing temporary pockets of delays.
Still, it’s a frustrating issue for those relying on their paychecks.
“It is really stressful for someone like me who doesn’t even get paid as much as other teachers,” Myers said.