Steamboat School Board extends superintendent’s contract |

Steamboat School Board extends superintendent’s contract

Steamboat Springs School District Superintendent Brad Meeks was first hired in 2011. (Courtesy photo)

The Steamboat Springs Board of Education approved a contract extension and 3% pay increase for Superintendent Brad Meeks on Monday night.

After a decade with the district, Meeks will make $214,788 in the upcoming school year, an increase of about $6,800 from a raise retroactively given to Meeks for the previous school year in February.

“Thank you, Superintendent Meeks, for your service to our district and for the excellent year of leadership,” said Board President Kelly Latterman, following a unanimous vote to approve the contract.

Board members did not discuss the contract in the public meeting but spent about two hours in executive session prior to the vote to evaluate Meeks’ performance, according to the meeting agenda.

In remarks after the contract approval, Meeks thanked staff, students, parents, the board and the broader community for staying together and working through what “was most certainly the most challenging year in education ever.”

“I’m very proud of the commitment staff showed to be here every day to serve our students, here meaning either in person or on Zoom,” Meeks said. “The behind-the-scenes efforts it took to be open every day were extraordinary.”

The raise will take effect at the start of the fiscal year Thursday. The vote also extended Meeks’ contract through the end of June 2023, though the salary for the 2022-23 school year will likely be negotiated at this time next year.

The board approved a similar 3% increase for the previous school year in February, retroactively increasing Meeks’ pay after a raise was postponed as the district worried its budget would be negatively impacted by the pandemic.

Meeks’ new salary is well above the state average of $129,048 for superintendents, according to Colorado Department of Education data collected at the start of the 2020 school year for 176 school districts that reported superintendent pay.

The pay level would put Meeks in the top 15 of superintendents in the state based on those numbers, but that will likely change when data is updated to reflect raises other superintendents received in the past year.

The school district has a goal to enroll 2,600 students from pre-kindergarten to 12th grade this fall and will open a new school in August.

The superintendent’s contract includes health care, a retirement plan and a $125 monthly mileage reimbursement. The new deal also increases the amount the district contributes to Meeks’ tax sheltered account, like a 401(k) account, by about 0.5% to $7,500 a year. There are no other allowances or housing benefits in the contract.

“I just wanted to thank (Meeks) personally for a really difficult year well done and to acknowledge all the personal time and stress he has been through this year,” said school board member Katy Lee. “Looking back, it has been an incredible year.”

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