Jeffco finalizes Glass hiring

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Superintendent will be paid a $265,000 base salary

By Sal Christ

Jeffco Public Schools has hired Jason Glass as its next superintendent.

After a unanimous vote Tuesday evening that approved both Glass’ hiring and a three-year contract, the school board said it felt it picked the right candidate for the job and was satisfied with the process by which Glass was selected and ultimately hired.

“I’m really excited about our decision this evening and the direction we’re going,” said board member Brad Rupert. “ … I honestly feel like we’re at a place where we righted the ship, but it’s time for us to set a new course, and I’m looking forward to the course that we can pursue for the benefit of our kids. I’m really excited to have Dr. Jason Glass as head of that.”

Board President Ron Mitchell echoed Rupert’s comments and said that despite a competitive pool of candidates, Glass outpaced everyone else.

“A quality destination is just a matter of course, so let’s choose that course and sail it,” said Mitchell. “I simply want to say the process was very competitive. We had great candidates.All five of us came together and coalesced around one candidate, and we named our sole finalist because the candidate that we were dealing with was by far the best match to lead Jeffco into the future.”

The board’s vote came after an hour of public comment, during which more than two dozen people spoke largely in favor of hiring Glass.

Jonna Levine, co-chair of advocacy group Support Jeffco Kids, praised the school board and district for the hiring process and for ultimately picking Glass as the sole finalist for the superintendent role.

“We would like to express our strong support for the hire of Dr. Jason Glass as the new Jeffco superintendent,” Levine said. “We’ve done our homework, and we are excited about having a new superintendent who is an outspoken advocate for public education, unapologetic for supporting teachers and the teaching profession, and who believes — to quote Dr. Glass — ‘values have serious and deep meaning and gets to the core of who people are and what they believe.’”

Parents, teachers and representatives from both of Jeffco’s employee unions all spoke in support of Glass’ hiring and what many called a transparent superintendent search.

Glass, who has served as the superintendent of Eagle County Schools since 2013, said he was overwhelmed with gratitude and excited to be the next superintendent of Jeffco Public Schools.

One of highest-paid superintendents in Colorado

According to the terms of his contract with the school district, which begins July 1, Glass will be paid a base salary of $265,000, which will be increased annually each July 1 at the rate of the Denver-Boulder-Greeley Consumer Price Index.

In addition, he will get 25 paid vacation days a year and a $750 monthly automobile allowance, and the district will contribute the equivalent of 7 percent of his annual salary to a tax-sheltered annuity plan.

Unlike his predecessor Dan McMinimee’s contract, there are no performance-pay clauses in Glass’ contract and neither his salary nor any raises will correlate with the results his annual performance evaluation. Despite verbiage that states that Glass’ annual performance evaluation will be kept confidential to the extent permitted by law, Colorado law requires that superintendent evaluations must be open for inspection.

Glass’ base salary will make him one of the highest-paid superintendents in the state. According to statistics from the state Education Department, Glass’ base salary trumps the salaries of superintendents in the Cherry Creek, St. Vrain Valley, Douglas County and Denver school districts, which range from $236,000 to $250,000 annually. Only Boulder Valley’s school district paid more in 2016-17.

Public reception for Glass

The school board will host a welcome reception for Glass from 4 to 6 p.m. Thursday, June 8, at Lakewood High School. The event is free and open to the public.

Contact reporter Sal Christ at sal@evergreenco.com or at 303-350-1035.