Thursday, June 26, 2008

Are public teacher contracts public?

Over the years I've read various articles and studies about how much teachers make, but I didn't think too much about how this information was obtained.

Several people are trying to find the retirement package for former Wheaton Warrenville Unit District 200 Superintendent Gary Catalani. The school district says "Catalani's contract isn't a public document because it's kept in a personnel file."

I have to wonder about this logic. If the contract had been filed into another folder, would that make the contract public. The tone of this article, Court may unseal Dist. 200 superintendent contract and the comments, it seems like in general, in the past, this kind of information was public. Some people are believe the school district is trying to hide the information because the salary and package was so outrageous.

Since we pay the taxes I think at a minimum we should know what the salary and package.

(Hat tip: Education Matters US)

Technorati tags: government schools, public school, public education, education


Queen of Carrots said...

The rules undoubtedly differ from state to state, but in Washington state, where I used to work in education policy, superintendent's contracts were public records and could be requested. I once had a file cabinet with every education employee's contract in the state. (Most collectively bargained, of course.)

Henry Cate said...

Maybe I'll ask for a copy of the local superintendent's contract. It could be interesting.