Jeffco board unanimously approves three-year contract for new superintendent

The school board for Jeffco Public Schools voted unanimously Tuesday to approve a contract that will pay incoming Superintendent Jason Glass $265,000 a year.

The contract lacks the performance-pay clauses that were a key component of his predecessor’s deal.

Glass, the current superintendent of Eagle County Schools, was named the sole finalist for the Jeffco job two weeks ago after a national search. He is set to begin his new role July 1.

The last Jeffco superintendent, Dan McMinimee, had a contract with a base salary of $220,000. He also earned earned $20,000 in performance bonuses in his last year — half of the maximum he could earn.

McMinimee could earn additional pay by meeting a number of goals, including if the district scored higher on state tests.

Before McMinimee, long-time Jeffco superintendent Cindy Stevenson’s contract outlined an annual base salary of $201,328.

Glass earns $202,342 annually leading the nearly 7,000-student Eagle County district, according to what he reported on his application for the Jeffco position.

His contract in Eagle County, first signed in 2013, started him with a base salary of $175,000 and tied his salary to the movement of teacher salaries. In the latest version, signed in 2016, Glass could earn up to a 4 percent raise each year depending on his performance evaluation, but only if teacher salaries were not cut that same year. Effective July 1, his salary would be frozen if teacher salaries also froze.

Earlier this spring, officials from the Ray & Associates firm hired to lead the search suggested advertising the base salary for the position at $300,000 so the job could be competitive with other large districts around the country.

Glass’s three-year contract with Jeffco outlines an annual performance evaluation that will not be tied to his salary or raises, and that will be kept confidential “to the extent permitted by Colorado law.”

Under Colorado law, principal and teacher evaluations can be kept confidential, but there’s an exception for superintendents. Their evaluations relating to “fulfilling the school district objectives,” must be “open for inspection.”

Glass will also get a $750 monthly car allowance and the district will cover his moving expenses, according to the contract. The district also will contribute an amount equal to 7 percent of his annual salary to a retirement account each year.

At Tuesday’s special board meeting, most of the speakers during a public comment voiced support of the new superintendent and the process for selecting him.

Glass, who spoke after the board vote, said that he is excited to work in Jeffco and that he will call on the community to work with him to help overcome the challenges of ignorance and poverty.

“Those are our enemies,” Glass said. “It will take this community standing together to beat them.”