New Salt Lake City School District Superintendent Elizabeth Grant is set to have a higher salary than each of the district’s last two recent superintendents.
According to Grant’s two-year contract, obtained by The Salt Lake Tribune through an open records request, she will receive an annual salary of $255,000 a year. That sum will increase each year based on cost-of-living adjustments “and any other negotiated increase received by other administrators,” the contract said.
Grant signed the contract, which runs from July 1, 2023, to June 30, 2025, at a brief school board meeting Thursday. Her salary and contract terms were not disclosed then.
Compared to Timothy Gadson’s 2021 contract and Lexi Cunningham’s 2018 contract — both also obtained through requests under the Government Records Access and Management Act — Grant’s salary is tens of thousands of dollars higher.
Cunningham, who was hired in 2016, was being paid a salary of $202,044 a year under her 2018 contract, with cost-of-living adjustments per year, according to the document.
Gadson was receiving $220,000 a year. Gadson’s contract additionally mentioned over $21,000 in relocation expenses, including additional money for storage and other relocation costs.
“In looking at comparable positions along the Wasatch Front, the salary [for Grant] is competitive and in line with said comparables,” said district spokesperson Yándary Chatwin in an email.
Grant has most recently been an associate professor of education in the Graduate School of Education at George Washington University.
Currently, interim superintendent Martin Bates is earning a similar salary to Gadson’s, $220,000 a year or $18,333 per month — while Gadson continues to earn his own salary, as well, despite his resignation as of Oct. 1.
Under the separation agreement reached by Gadson and the school board, Gadson is being paid $18,251 a month by the district through June 2023 as a consultant to the board, regardless of whether members use his services. And according to Chatwin, the district has not requested any consulting services from him.
As for benefits, all three were offered 20 days of vacation along with five personal leave days. Furthermore, Grant — similar to Gadson and Cunningham — will get the same health and insurance benefits as other 12-month administrators in the district.
One difference was additional language in Grant’s contract regarding the incoming superintendent’s “outside activities.”
Along with language regarding allowing her to “serve as a consultant to other districts or educational agencies, lecture, and engage in other activities of a short-term duration at her discretion,” the clause adds that these outside activities “must not detract from the faithful completion of her work and duties on behalf of the District.”
Former superintendent Gadson was questioned about a trip he took to Grand Canyon University, a private, for-profit Christian university where he had previously taught before joining the Salt Lake City district.
But Chatwin said the additional language in Grant’s contract was not inserted because of any specific reason, and said it was “due to the different styles of the drafting attorney for each respective contract.”