AASD admins to get raises

Compensation plans capped to save money

The Altoona Area School District administrative personnel will see a 3 percent increase with a maximum of $3,000 for the 2018-19 school year, in accordance with compensation plans approved by the board on Monday.

The increase for the 2019-20 fiscal year is also a 3 percent increase with a maximum of $3,000.

The increases apply to four categories of administrators including principals and central office administrators as well as administrative support personnel and non-instructional personnel.

Administrators with individual contracts, Business Manager Camilla Houy and Assistant Superintendent Patty Burlingame are also set to receive 3 percent increases with a maximum of $3,000 while Superintendent Charles Prijatelj’s salary is to increase for the 2018-19 fiscal year contract by 2 percent with a maximum of $3,000.

The raises were approved by Dutch Brennan, William Ceglar, Wayne Hippo, Rick Hoover and Kelly Irwin Adams. Nay votes were cast by Sharon Bream, Ron Johnston, David Francis and Ed Kreuz.

“We are trying to save money to offset the potential tax increase for the school building project,” Bream said. “I think this is the area where we can do it.”

Despite other board members’ interpretation of what Francis said at previous meetings where raises were discussed, Francis said Monday that he was not against an increase but did not agree to 3 percent.

Contacted on Wednesday, board President Brennan said the board had held executive sessions about raises.

“The initial movement was a 3.25 percent raise, which was same as teachers received, with a cap of $2,600. Then the conversations moved forward about saving money. We are trying to reduce percentage of the increase, so to do that, the idea was to increase the cap,” Brennan said.

The cap saves money on salary spending for people in the administration who are making six figures,” he said. “And when you reduce the overall percentage like we did, that affects everyone.”

Brennan said a raise was necessary to keep administrators in the district.

“I’ve seen us lose people who we invested thousands of dollars in training in, because we were not being competitive,” he said.

Brennan said he believes the 3 percent raise was the right amount to save money while not be insulting to administrators.

Mirror Staff Writer Russ O’Reilly is at 946-7435.