This is the third part in a series looking at town employee salaries in 2010. The first part looked at the while the second part looked at . The final installment here covers school employees.
employees did not place as highly on the list of top earners in town, but there are a fair number, excluding administrators, who earned at the top step of their pay scale and then some.
Six employees earned more than $100,000 and about 35 teachers (on the payroll, “teacher” also identifies some support staff, such as guidance counselors) took home just under or more than $88,000 – the top step on the scale. Some of those teachers in fact cracked $100,000 or were close to it.
School Business Manager Richard Warren said the most likely explanation is that in addition to the teachers being at the top step, they were receiving stipends for coaching athletics or running co-curricular activities. The schools do not have teachers act as department heads for which they would receive stipends, Warren said. And in some cases, contract provisions account for the extra pay.
For example, Joy Leblanc, a guidance counselor with many years in the Danvers Public Schools, was paid $104,085. That’s primarily due to a contract provision for guidance counselors because they work 10 extra days in the school year.
Another example is middle school health and physical education teacher Roger Day, who is also the head high school varsity baseball coach. Day earned $97,376 last year and is paid a stipend of $4,790 for coaching baseball. He was also an assistant football coach as well.
In addition to Leblanc, the other five school employees above $100,000 were all administrators. Superintendent of Schools Lisa Dana earned $153,885, Assistant Superintendent/Danvers High Principal Susan Ambrozavitch earned $133,570, Holten-Richmond Middle School Principal Michael Cali earned $127,189, Director of Student Services Kathleen Curtis earned $106,254 and Warren earned $105,516.
Dana’s salary under her new contract doesn’t include additional compensation or allowances, although she was previously given a retirement allowance of 6 percent of her salary for a retirement annuity. Ambrozavitch, Cali and DHS Assistant Principal Mark Strout also all receive stipends for additional duties they’ve taken on for the life of the high school renovation project.
For 2012, Ambrozavitch will get $25,000 extra for continuing as DHS Principal, Cali will receive $15,000 for overseeing the renovation project and Strout will get $10,000 for shouldering more administrative duties at the high school as the Senior Assistant Principal.
“It’s a huge savings when compared with hiring another school principal,” Warren said.
Another thing revealed by a look at salaries is the small difference in earnings between most administrators and top-level teachers, which has created a level of inequity the School Committee has been trying to adjust for in recent years.
During budget sessions for fiscal 2012, board member William Bates raised some objections to small equity raises yet again for administrators in light of the economic circumstances. Committee members argued that asking non-union staff to take pay freezes in tough times inevitably created a cycle of inequity.