Seattle Superintendent Larry Nyland will get about a $13,800 raise this year, increasing his base salary to $289,879 annually, with an extended contract through June 2018. He has said he’ll donate the raise to the district’s general fund.
The Seattle School Board voted Wednesday to extend Superintendent Larry Nyland’s contract by one year and increase his $276,075 salary by about $13,800, though he said before the vote that he plans to donate all of his raise to the district’s general fund.
The 5 percent raise puts Nyland’s annual base salary at $289,879. His contract was extended through June 2018. The board voted 6-1; Director Betty Patu voted against the motion.
Nyland said at the meeting that he will donate all of his raise to the Seattle Public Schools’ fund, though he didn’t specify if he meant for one year or for all three years of his contract. He had previously said he would donate half his raise during the 2015-16 year to the general fund, in recognition of the district’s tightened budget.
In addition to his base salary, Nyland receives a cellphone, laptop, a $700-a-month stipend for car expenses and $24,000 a year in retirement benefits.
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In his November evaluation, the Board President Sherry Carr wrote that Nyland had met, and in some cases exceeded, the members’ expectations. They’ve also said they wanted to avoid more turnover in the top post.
“The Board appreciates the Superintendent’s steady hand, calm demeanor and deep leadership experience,” Carr wrote in the Nov. 16 evaluation. “He has stabilized the district’s senior leadership …”
While the board didn’t deem Nyland as “unsatisfactory” in any of the goals where he was evaluated, it did say they want to see significant improvement in his relationships with key groups, such as teachers, the business community and legislators.
The board referenced the Seattle teachers strike in September, the recent separation from the Alliance for Education and the continued effort to have the Legislature to fully fund public K-12 education in Washington.
“Further progress requires extensive investment in relationships,” Carr wrote. “The labor strike with SEA (Seattle Education Association) and events that followed represent a setback for Seattle Public Schools, and work must be done to restore the trust and confidence of our families.”
At the meeting, one parent group, which argues Nyland shouldn’t receive a raise amid budget concerns in the district, displayed letters from parents, students and teachers detailing how they would spend the $13,000 he will receive.
“We believe Dr. Nyland’s offer to donate all of his raise is a very nice gesture but ask him to decline the raise instead,” parent Carolyn Leith said before the vote.