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Atlanta schools top peers – by far – in $100K+ salaries
Nearly 1,000 employees in five local school districts earned $100,000 or more in 2008-09, with the heaviest concentration by far in Atlanta Public Schools, an analysis of state salary data shows.
Administrative salaries face the knife across metro Atlanta this year as districts try to tighten budgets without harming classroom instruction. DeKalb County Superintendent Crawford Lewis plans to unveil a 2011 budget this week with cuts in central office positions and pay. Other metro school districts contemplate similar measures.
DeKalb paid more $100,000+ salaries — 223 — than any other Georgia school district last year, the State Auditor’s online salary database shows. DeKalb was followed by Fulton County schools (219), Gwinnett County (214), Atlanta (181) and Cobb County (124).
For its size, though, Atlanta had many more salaries topping 100 grand than the others. Gwinnett has more than three times as many students as Atlanta, and Cobb and DeKalb have twice as many.
To compare districts, Atlanta Unfiltered calculated the ratio of $100,000+ salaries per 1,000 students for each metro school system. The result: Atlanta in 2009 had proportionally far more highly-paid staffers — mostly administrators — than any other.
Atlanta had 3.69 employees earning $100K or more per thousand students, the analysis shows. That was nearly three times as many as Gwinnett, which had 1.35 such jobs per thousand students. (The comparison excluded small municipal districts, such as Marietta and Decatur, with fewer than 10,000 students.)
With a $389,314 paycheck, Beverly Hall, Atlanta’s superintendent, ranked as the best-paid school employee in Georgia last year.
So who else was making the big bucks there? The auditor’s data shows Atlanta paid $100,000 or more to these positions:
- 77 principals
- 21 instructional supervisors
- 11 assistant principals
- 10 curriculum/instruction directors
- 7 deputy or assistant superintendents
- 6 lawyers
- 6 finance/business services managers
- 6 information service staffers
- 5 teachers
- 4 plant operations managers
- 3 human resources managers
- 3 psychologists
- 3 staff development specialists
- 3 technology directors
- 2 security officers
- 2 school improvement specialists
- 1 athletics director
- 1 director of child services
- 1 federal programs director
- 1 food service administrator
- 1 nurse
- 1 public relations staffer
- 1 social services case manager
- 1 social worker
- 1 vocational director
- 1 transportation manager
- 1 transportation mechanic
Here’s how metro school districts compare: