- Video shows Gibraltar staff who are discussing the recent survey on employee satisfaction rates with their living circumstances.
- Secondary Principal Jim DeBroux worked alongside a community member to create the survey.
- The survey, sent out to all professional staff, found that 81 percent of employees who reported being happy with their current situation live less than 10 miles from work, while 40 percent of unhappy employees live more than 21 miles away.
(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story)
Frustrations about housing have an impact across Door County including the Gibraltar School District. I’m your Door County neighborhood reporter Katlyn Holt and the secondary principal has taken a unique approach to document his staff's feelings towards the issue.
"If I could take Gibraltar and plant it over somewhere else, I'd be like, "Yes!" Because the people are fabulous," said Schira.
Jackie Schira is the speech and language pathologist for the Gibraltar School District. She has been in this role for three years now but had worked in the area in the past.
"Because of the housing situation, I actually felt I needed to do something differently. So, I left for a short period," said Schira.
Schira says homes are too expensive for middle-class families like her own.
They found a space to rent through word-of-mouth, but she says that's almost the only way to find somewhere affordable to rent here.
"Once in a while you'll see something come up, but the rent will be $3,000 plus utilities and we’ll try to say something like, 'Did I tell you I was a teacher?'" said Schira.
According to the Wisconsin Realtors Association, the median sale price of a house in Door County as of August was $422,450. That's up 22.5 percent from August 2022, when the median sale price was $345,000.
The secondary principal of Gibraltar School District said they could no longer rely on anecdotes about the housing struggles his staff was facing. So, he decided to send a survey out to get some hard numbers.
"One of our big concerns in attracting and retaining quality candidates is where are you going to live if you work at Gibraltar School District," said DeBroux.
80 percent of staff replied to the survey and many rent due to expensive housing prices in the local area or are forced to commute from other communities.
It found that 81 percent of employees who reported being happy with their current situation live less than 10 miles from work, while 40 percent of unhappy employees live more than 21 miles away.
88 percent of employees who are renting reported that they are unhappy.
Schira says she believes the survey was a step in the right direction.
"I was doing a very happy dance inside, saying 'I’m so glad that they're finally you know, going out there and trying to understand what's happening in this community,'" said Schira.
DeBroux says for now, he sees the next step as creating awareness of these issues. In Fish Creek, Katlyn Holt, NBC 26.