July 13, 2005 - Mehlville School District Central Office administrators received a 2.4 percent salary increase for the 2005-2006 school year with the exception of Superintendent Tim Ricker, who offered to take no pay hike.
Ricker and the district's assistant superintendents declined salary increases for the 2004-2005 school year, requesting those funds be used for other employees.
Receiving 2.4 percent salary increases for the 2005-2006 school year were South Area Superintendent Keith Klusmeyer, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum Connie Hurst-Bayless, Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources A.D. McClain and Assistant Superintendent for Student Services Cindy Lynch.
In a letter to Board of Education President Rita Diekemper recommending the 2.4 percent raises, Ricker wrote, "The CO (Central Office) team took a voluntary freeze last year. It is my belief that they deserve this raise, and while it will never make up for the salary loss, it is a small way to adjust for last year's sacrifice.''
Ricker's June 9 letter to Diekemper was obtained by the Call under the provisions of the Missouri Open Meetings and Records Law, also called the Sunshine Law.
Board members approved the 2.4 percent salary increases for the four assistant superintendents during a June 16 closed session, according to information obtained by the Call under the provisions of the Sunshine Law. The board voted 6-1 to approve the pay hikes with Karl Frank Jr. opposed.
In his letter, Ricker wrote, "In anticipation of our financial situation, staffing plans, employee discussions and need for expenditures to be reduced, I am respectfully volunteering to take no increase in my contract, which was extended for one more year. Once again, being the highest-paid person in the district carries much responsibility.
"I continue to feel any dollars used for my salary increase should be forgone and given to the teachers, classified staff and remaining administrators who support the work in each of the buildings,'' he wrote.
Ricker became superintendent July 1, 2003, and his compensation package of $153,200 remains unchanged from the 2003-2004 school year.
Besides salary, Ricker's compensation includes an additional 10 percent of his base salary for retirement and an in-district travel allowance of $600 per month — $7,200 annually.
But when the Board of Education announced in January 2003 it had reached an agreement with Ricker to replace retiring Superintendent John Cary, Ricker's total compensation package was valued at $150,200, which included a base salary of $130,000, an additional 10 percent of his base salary for retirement and an in-district travel allowance of $600 per month.
For the 2002-2003 school year, Cary was paid $133,000 — a 3.91 percent increase from his 2001-2002 salary of $128,000. Cary also received an additional $13,300 — 10 percent of the annual salary amount — as compensation for retirement, and $500 per month for in-district travel, bringing his total compensation package to $152,300.
Ricker previously served as the district's south area superintendent, beginning in 2001.
For the 2002-2003 school year, he was paid $108,885 — a 3.7 percent increase from his 2001-2002 salary of $105,000. He replaced Brent Underwood, who began serving as superintendent of the Webster Groves School District during the 2001-2002 school year. For the 1999-2000 school year, Underwood was paid $98,171. The previous year he was paid $90,600.
Salaries for other Central Office administrators for the 2005-2006 school year are:
• Klusmeyer is being paid $108,545.85, up from $106,000. Klusmeyer, who previously served as principal at Remington Traditional School in the Pattonville School District, began his duties July 1, 2003, filling the position vacated by Ricker.
• Hurst-Bayless is being paid $114,877.85, up from $112,183.49. For the 2002-2003 school year, her salary of $107,848. The previous year she was paid $104,000. During the 2000-2001 school year, Hurst's salary was $92,000. Before that, George Ann Fisher held the position during the 1999-2000 school year before retiring with a salary of $98,171.
• McClain is being paid $114,877.85, up from $112,183.49. For the 2002-2003 school year, his salary was $107,848. The previous year he was paid $104,000. For the 2000-2001 school year, McClain was paid $94,585.20. He began his duties in Mehlville during the 1999-2000 school year with a salary of $92,000.
• Lynch is being paid $102,730.97, up from $100,321.51. Lynch was awarded a 3.5 percent raise in December 2003 after earning an educational specialist degree. Before that, she was paid $96,928.96. For the 2002-2003 school year, she was paid $93,183. The previous year she was paid $89,000. Lynch earned $83,455 during the 2000-2001 school year. She formerly served as executive director of pupil personnel services and earned $80,000 for the 1999-2000 school year.
Two other Central Officer administrators are being paid $106,000 for the 2005-2006 school year.
Eric Knost is the district's new north area superintendent and Stephen Keyser is the district's new chief financial officer.
Knost, who previously served as principal of Oakville Senior High School, replaced Jane Reed, who retired. Reed, who became the district's deputy superintendent July 1, 2003, received a compensation package totaling $130,575. Besides salary, Reed's compensation included an additional 10 percent of her base salary for retirement and an in-district travel allowance of $400 per month — $4,800.
Reed became north area superintendent in 2000 and continued in that role in addition to her deputy superintendent responsibilities. For the 2002-2003 school year, Reed was paid $109,922 — a 3.7 percent increase from her 2001-2002 salary of $106,000. For the 2000-2001 school year, she was paid $102,000.
Reed replaced Kathleen Keusenkothen, who became the superintendent of the city of St. Charles School District. As area superintendent, Keusenkothen was paid $99,075.53. The previous year Keusenkothen was paid $91,772.
Keyser replaced Randy Charles, who began serving as superintendent of the Hillsboro School District July 1. Charles was paid $111,104.80. For the 2002-2003 school year, his salary was $106,811. The previous year he was paid $103,000.
Charles had served as Mehlville Senior High School principal with a salary of $99,410 and replaced Tom Foraker, who retired after the 2000-2001 school year with a salary of $92,282.