HOUSTON (KIAH) — Harmony Public Schools kicked off National Teacher Appreciation Week with some extra dollars for their teachers.

The school announced that all of its employees – including its 4,800 teachers – will receive a $500 stipend this week, a total of roughly $2.4 million.

The private school system, which has eight schools in the Houston area and 23 total across Texas, said the stipend is a thank you from the schools’ administration for its hard work through the 2020-21 school year.

“Throughout the many challenges of the past few years, our Harmony Public Schools team members have stepped up time and time again to keep our students focused on learning,” Harmony Public Schools CEO Fatih Ay said. “Whether they are a teacher, an extracurricular club coach, a college counselor, mentor or one of the many other roles needed to give our students the full spectrum of support they deserve, our team members are making a difference every day at Harmony.”

The funds will be distributed this week to current employees who were hired after this April.

This isn’t the first time Harmony has given out stipends to its employees. The school gave out a similar stipend three times since the pandemic started, including May of 2021. Along with free dental, vision, matching retirement contributions, and an increase in its life insurance policy, Harmony has spent $6.8 million in additional spending on its employees.