This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.
Changes in top management at the District include a new chief of staff, Superintendent Ackerman’s third in 16 months; a newly created $130,000 position for her former chief of staff; and a chain reaction of shifts to fill vacated positions.
The latest moves come on top of other recent shuffles that had already boosted the central office payroll. They include raises for some administrators, but these appear to be mostly balanced out by savings on salaries for other positions.
The creation of a new management-level position comes just when the District is confronted with a need to reduced budgeted expenses by $160 million or more, due to a smaller-than-expected increase in state aid.
District communications chief Evelyn Sample-Oates told the Inquirer that funding had been found for the changes.
Here are the changes and their salary implications:
District veteran Tomas Hanna moves to chief of staff from chief of school operations, but his salary remains at $180,000, the same as his predecessor, Thomas Darden.
Darden moves from chief of staff to the newly created position of deputy for process improvement and compliance. His job is to scrutinize contracts, grants, and improvement plans. The salary for the new position, not in the 09-10 District budget, is $130,000, a pay cut for Darden, who prior to becoming chief of staff directed Reliant Equity Investors, a Chicago-based private equity firm from 2000 until it failed in 2008.
John Frangipani moves to chief of school operations from South region superintendent. His salary gets a raise to $160,000, $20,000 less than his predecessor, Hanna.
Ralph Burnley is the new, interim South region Superintendent and was formerly the assistant regional superintendent. He is still earning $123,600, some $14,000 less than his predecessor, Frangipani, who earned $137,917.
Emmanuel Caulk replaces Burnley as interim assistant superintendent from the South region and vacates the position of deputy chief in the office of instruction and leadership support. In his new post, his salary stays at $130,000, $6,400 more than Burnley.
Traci Teasley replaces Caulk as head of the office of instruction and leadership support, at a salary of $123,600, which is $6,400 less than Caulk made.
Teasley’s old position as an assistant superintendent in the comprehensive high school region has been filled.
Two additional staff get new roles and substantial raises.
David Weiner, promoted from deputy to chief of accountability, gets an increase from $130,000 to $150,000.
Northwest Regional Superintendent Pamela Brown also takes on the role of head of the empowerment schools and gets a pay boost to $160,000 from $137,917. Brown will be assisted in her new role by a retiree on contract, Jack Hamilton. The District has provided only a daily rate for Hamilton.
Other changes that have contributed to a higher central office payroll include:
- Sample-Oates was hired in September as chief communications officer, after the departure of Cecilia Cummings, senior vice president for communications, whose position was budgeted at $137,917. Sample-Oates is earning $180,000.
- The District’s second-highest paid employee (behind only Superintendent Ackerman), General Counsel Sherry Swirsky, who earns $236,900 according to the 2009-10 budget, has been on administrative leave since May, drawing a full salary. Acting General Counsel Miles Shore stepped into this role and had his pay boosted from $109,272 to $150,000.
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