School Committee wants to guarantee 3 years and over half Million Dollars to School Supt (plus bonus)



Salah  Khelfaoui Sun Photo Bob Whitaker
Salah Khelfaoui
Sun Photo Bob Whitaker

The SUPERINTENDENT shall be employed for a three-year period commencing July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2019.

What was avoided the other Night by the fiasco that was a Special meeting of the Lowell School Committee is giving this Supt. a Term defined 3 year contract that included a retroactive almost $5,000 raise along with a built in a 2.5% raise each year with a possible $5,000 Bonus If the SUPERINTENDENT receives an overall reported grade of Proficient or better payable within 30 days in the 2nd and 3rd year of the contract.

The contract which was amended by the Law dept. was presented at the begining of the meeting and became a public document instead of the contract being settled in Executive Session than revealed in open session and voted on.

The entire contract is attached above but here are some “Highlights”

a) The SUPERINTENDENT shall be paid an annual salary, commencing retroactively July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017 of One Hundred Eighty-Nine Thousand Six Hundred and Twenty-Five ($189,625.00)

GN: That’s $4,625.00 MORE than what is in the approved budget and his current salary, which would make his salary $194,365.00 in year 2 and $199,224.00 in year 3.

2.TERM: The SUPERINTENDENT shall be employed for a three-year period commencing July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2019.

a) If the SUPERINTENDENT receives an overall reported grade of Proficient or better in the second or third year of the contract, then he shall be paid a performance bonus of Five Thousand ($5,000.00) Dollars over and above his annual salary within 30 days.

The SUPERINTENDENT shall no later than March 1, 2019 advise the COMMITTEE by written notice whether he desires to negotiate a successor agreement. Failure to so notify the COMMITTEE shall result in the expiration of this agreement on June 30, 2019 unless this agreement is otherwise terminated for cause as stated herein

GN: Why would you wait until March to find out you need a Supt? That should be Jan 2nd of 2019 to give the School Committee plenty of time to find a qualified candidate.

3. TERMINATION BY THE SUPERINTENDENT: In the event that said SUPERINTENDENT desires to terminate this contract before the term of services shall have expired, he may do so if he gives at least one hundred twenty (120) days written notice of his intention to the COMMITTEE.

GN: He gives 4 months notice but has no penalty for leaving early?

12. ANNUAL VACATION: The SUPERINTENDENT shall receive twenty-five (25) working days as annual vacation, exclusive of legal holidays. Unused vacation time shall not be carried over.

13. SICK LEAVE: The SUPERINTENDENT shall be credited with fifteen (15) sick days annually commencing on the first day of this contract and on the first day of each fiscal year thereafter. Unused sick leave may be accumulated to a maximum of sixty (60) days, to be used in time of need. The SUPERINTENDENT will not receive any buy back for any unused sick days on his resignation, retirement, termination or death.

GN: I give both sides credit for at least having NO buyback clause.

There is NO reason to give this Supt. a Term Defined contract, especially in a year where the budget is going to be tough, it’s an election year and based on the haphazard way the budget was presented and the last fiscal year closed along with his many public mis- statements.

A) He announced on the Radio during the Interview that MASS State Law REQUIRED a Contract, yet the Dept. of Elementary and Secondary Education Says there is NO SUCH LAW !

:From: “Helene H Bettencourt (DOE)”
To: “Gerry”
Sent: Thursday, December 29, 2016 2:35:37 PM
Subject: RE: ESE Web Contact Us Form – Do Supt of School Require a contract

Hi Gerry, Massachusetts law states that the school committee “shall have the power to select and to terminate the superintendent” (Mass. Gen. Laws c. 71, s. 37) and that the school committee “shall employ a superintendent of schools and fix his compensation” (G.L. c. 71, s. 59). The school committee “may award a contract to a superintendent of schools… for periods not exceeding six years which may provide for the salary, fringe benefits, and other conditions of employment, including but not limited to, severance pay, relocation expenses, reimbursement for expenses incurred in the performance of duties or office, liability insurance, and leave for said superintendent…” (Mass. Gen. Laws c. 71, s. 41) Typically, the school committee and superintendent enter into a written employment contract, but state law does not mandate a written contract.


and my favorite: “The beauty of me in all of this is you can go ahead and fire me any time you want. I’m ready to retire, so I don’t really care about any of the politics.”

Why not wait to see if this current budget finishes without having the city transfer money to keep it balanced?

Wait until we see what the state budget picture looks like and wait until the Administration follows up on the motion to develop a timeline for dealing with year-end surpluses so that the School Committee can decide how to allocate such funds.

The motion should have been to develop a year end procedure to freeze PO’s effective June 1st and then to present a timeline for dealing with closing the fiscal year and figuring out if a surplus exist and if so how the School Committee wants to allocate such funds.

Hopefully after the embarrassment of the way this contract was trying to be rammed down the School Committees throats, the Mayor will back off and think of the citizens and parents rather than his own political agenda.

Author: Gerry Nutter's - Looking at Lowell

I'm BACK...! I've followed the finances and issues with the City of Lowell and the Lowell School Dept. for the past 8 years while blogging and contributing to Saturday Morning Live! After serving 1 term on the School Committee I am back with my view on the events, people and politics of Lowell.

One thought on “School Committee wants to guarantee 3 years and over half Million Dollars to School Supt (plus bonus)”

  1. So he wants a big fat raise, the school people want to be reimbursed for walking 3 minutes longer. What do the non-school side laborers, the clerks , the water dept etc. get ? Nada , zip, zilch because it all goes to the muckety mucks that take the credit for the work done by the little guys.

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