Missoula Superintendent Gets 10% Raise


One clear lesson from the recent economic downturn seems to be that it’s always better to be at the top of the heap when hard financial choices are being made. While school districts across the state have been cutting programs and laying off teachers because of budget difficulties, there always seems to be enough money available for paying administrators just a bit more.

The latest beneficiary of this public largesse? Missoula County Superintendent Alex Apostle, who received a very generous 10% raise and additional benefits from the Board:

A new contract approved Tuesday by the Missoula County Public Schools Board of Trustees gives Superintendent Alex Apostle a raise of more than 10 percent, making his new salary of $155,000 the second-highest in the state.

Apostle also will get $1,000 monthly toward automobile reimbursement – up from $300 in 2009 – and $833 monthly for a tax-sheltered annuity toward retirement, also up from $300.

Not bad. A 10 per cent raise, over $6,000 more in annuity payments, and $8,400 more for auto reimbursement. I would imagine that someone making $155k could pay for his own damn car, but I guess that’s part of the reason I am just a low-level teacher.

The Board credited Apostle for “turning the district around.” I’m sure that the other staff members including teachers, all of whom received .5% raises, appreciate his efforts, too.  What did Apostle have to say about the raises given to his staff at the time?

Citing rising health costs and continued uncertainty in the economy, MCPS superintendent Alex Apostle said the proposed contract "represents the best possible scenario for our classified employees given the existing budget situation."

Best possible scenario indeed.

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About the author

Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba is an eighteen-year teacher of English, former debate coach, and loyal, if often sad, fan of the San Diego Padres and Portland Timbers. He spends far too many hours of his life working at school and on his small business, Big Sky Debate.

His work has appeared in Politico and Rewire.

In the past few years, travel has become a priority, whether it's a road trip to some little town in Montana or a museum of culture in Ísafjörður, Iceland.

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