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Education Advocate: DISD Cabinet Members Salaries ‘Exorbitant’

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(credit: KTVT/KTXA) Steve Pickett
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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The Dallas Independent School District has already announced an anticipated $38 million budget deficit for the 2012-13 school year –– but four cabinet members will see salaries that range from $182,000 to $220,000.

The district’s 11,000 teachers will not receive pay raises. To save money, school board trustees voted to close 11 schools. Hundreds of custodians employed with DISD will endure a 10 percent pay cut.

But newly hired Superintendent Mike Miles is paying six-figure salaries to top level administrators, despite those budget constraints.

Miles recruited his Communications Chief from his former district in Colorado Springs. Jennifer Sprague earned $86,000  annually with the Harrison School District. Her salary with Dallas ISD will be $185,000.

“It is a slap in the face to your teachers,” NEA-Dallas President Angela Davis said Wednesday. Davis represents 2,500 teachers employed with Dallas ISD.  She said the district has repeatedly asked employees to make financial sacrifices, including pay cuts for custodians.

She called the salary ranges for cabinet members exorbitant.

“You’re asking teachers and others to do more for less. Something is not right with that”, she said.

Miles, still on duty with his Colorado school district, said by phone today the salaries are based on top level executives in similar school districts.

“Houston pays the same,” he said.

Miles said he is not spending any more money than the budget allows, and says the cabinet members will actually work to save the district money.

“The district has to have a cabinet with national level competency, and paying them at this salary range makes sense,” Miles said.

The DISD Board of Trustees will meet Saturday morning to discuss the budget, and Miles’ Action Plan.

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