Superintendent Fagen’s latest five year contract is a great deal–for her.
Salary and Perks
Fagen’s base salary is $273,715.05. The salary may be increased at any time during the contract. Based on the two hundred sixty day contract, Fagen’s per-diem (daily) rate is $1,052.75.
If Fagen has paid speaking engagements, she must use her personal or vacation time in order to keep the compensation from those engagements.
But that’s not much of a problem, because she has thirty-five PAID days off annually.
Additionally, the Superintendent can be paid out for up to ten days at the per diem rate (of $1,052.75), per year. That is a perk valued at $10,527.50, per year.
Teachers are allowed to cash out unused sick days (for right now) if they have at least ten consecutive years of service. The cash amount for their sick days is currently $48/day, according to the Compensation and Benefits Handbook.
Evaluation Rating: Highly Effective
Fagen’s rating of “Highly Effective” earned her a 5.4% bonus this year. That brings her compensation up to $288,495.66.
PERA and Additional Retirement
As a district employee, Fagen receives PERA (Public Employee Retirement) instead of Social Security. She also receives supplemental retirement benefits of up to $20,000/year. Assuming she is receiving the maximum, her annual compensation is $308,495.66.
In addition to the maximum contribution of $20,000, the district will match any contribution Fagen makes herself–up to one and a half times (the IRS limits the total employer/employee contribution to $53,000)–meaning a possible additional yearly compensation of nearly $20,000.
Anyone who has been to Board meetings knows how much the DCSD school board despises PERA. So, it’s especially interesting that Fagen’s own required employee contributions, 8% to PERA, are generously being reimbursed to her by the taxpayers of Douglas County on the authority of the Board.
Eight percent of her salary, including Pay for Performance, as that is PERA eligible, is $23,079.64. This brings her total compensation up to $331,575.31.
Fagen’s insurance premiums for her family coverage are fully paid by DCSD, as well as all of her deductibles and co-pays. This means that when Dr. Fagen, or anyone covered by her family coverage, goes to the doctor the district reimburses her out-of-pocket expenses.
Additionally, she has a life insurance policy equal to twice her annual salary.
Contract Buy-Out with a Million Dollar Price Tag
There is a clause for termination of the superintendent’s contract which includes a buy-out of the contract.
Using the most conservative number to calculate the buy-out of the contract (base salary only), and given that Fagen has fifty-six months remaining on her contract, the cost to buy Dr. Fagen out of her contract right now is $1,277,336.90.
Employees know that all of their lesson plans, notes, programs, etc. that they create as a part of their employment with DCSD belongs to DCSD, based on laws around “Intellectual Property.”
So, one of the most “interesting” parts of Fagen’s contract is this:
The current DCSD Board of Education has proven to be very liberal with Douglas County taxpayer dollars when it comes to their superintendent. At the same time this school board was vocalizing their desire to be prudent with taxpayer money when it comes fully funding schools and addressing the capital needs of buildings and facilities, they approved an extremely lucrative contract for their superintendent.