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Morgan says raises should follow results

July 23, 2002|by DAN KULIN /Staff Writer

dank@herald-mail.com

Washington County Superintendent Elizabeth Morgan's future raises, and those of top school system administrators, will depend on factors such as student improvement, Morgan said Monday.

"I think it's important because it ties my compensation to results and the results are what's important," Morgan said. "If I don't achieve very specific things, I shouldn't get a raise. Of course I expect to accomplish them."

The specific criteria that will be used to figure out whether Morgan or others receive raises, or how much their raises would be, is still under discussion, said Morgan and Board of Education President Edward Forrest.

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But they said possible determinants include getting more students to score higher on Advanced Placement tests, increasing the number of students taking the SAT and lowering the dropout rate.

Morgan said results-based raises will apply to her and 13 top school system administrators, including the deputy superintendent and department heads.

Forrest said as of Monday, the board has only reviewed a proposal to make Morgan's raises based on school and/or student improvement. Any changes to pay, or how raises are determined, would have to be approved by the School Board, he said.

Morgan said eventually she would like raises for other school system employees, including teachers and principals, to be based on achieving specific goals or taking on additional work.

"Whatever we do, it has got to be extremely objective," Morgan said.

"It was one of Dr. Morgan's ideas to move to a performance way of deciding salary increases," Forrest said. "She wanted to be the example."

Morgan is guaranteed her base salary of $120,000 for the length of her four-year contract, but "any raise or bonus would be directly linked to improvement," Forrest said.

"I am not going to get any raise or any bonus unless I deliver," Morgan said.

In the past, superintendent's raises were negotiated and often based on subjective criteria; now those raises will be based on measurable factors, Forrest said. The School Board will decide exactly what those factors will be by the end of August or early September, he said.

Morgan said she asked results-based compensation when she and the board were negotiating her contract in January.

"It's very important for people to be compensated and I believe very strongly in accountability. The two should go hand in hand," Morgan said.

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