Monday, November 22, 2010

Transparency in Schools for Superintendent Salaries

Do you want to know how much your school's superintendent really makes and not just what the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (MO DESE) reported in their annual reports as salary? If so, then you will need to get a copy of your superintendent's employment contract.

The ShowMeInstitute recently published a report that discusses the need for transparency in schools with regard to superintendent salaries. Superintendent salaries have been growing significantly in recent years despite the down economy. Since schools are supported by taxpayer dollars, the salaries of school district employees is public information. Each year schools must report to Missouri DESE the salaries of their employees including the position and years of service. However, not all of the compensation for superintendents is reported as salary to Missouri DESE. There are other compensations such as Annuities, Family Health Insurance, Life Insurance and automobile allowances that can easily add up to another $25,000 or more in addition to their reported salaries. This other compensation is typically written into the employment contracts which is public information and a copy can be requested from the school district since they are paid with tax payer dollars. Well, the has already done a lot of this work for you and you can find the information in their online report completed earlier this year. For more information please read the report.

The Show Me Institute article above refers to a study they did on Actual Pay of Missouri Public School Superintendents. Their survey covered salary and other benefits that superintendents are paid which aren't always reported to the public which can be a considerable amount. You can review the study using the following link:
Actual Pay: A Survey of Missouri Public School Superintendent Salary and Benefit Packages

The ShowMeInstitute also has copies of most of the superintendent contracts in the state of Missouri which is public information for review. (Updated in 2017, the link below to the contracts is no longer valid.)

Another place that you can find Educators Salaries are on the STLTODAY website which compiled the salaries for the 2008 through 2010 school years and is searchable by school, name, position or pay range.

So where does your superintendent's pay rank amongst other school district's in the state?