Stewart to Pinellas board: No need for a new contract or more pay
Pinellas County superintendent John Stewart, hired in September as an interim leader in the wake of Julie Janssen's termination, told board members this morning that he will stay on through July 2013, but doesn't need more pay to do it.
School board members expected today to discuss the terms of a rewritten contract for Stewart. Board member Carol Cook last month said she wanted to explore entering negotiations with Stewart to keep him in Pinellas through the 2013 school year.
Stewart, 68, said he's still willing to staying that long, but prefers to stick with the contract he signed at the outset: drawing $12,000 a month -- or $144,000 year -- for a period of time that isn't prescribed. Janssen made $203,000 a year before she was terminated.
Stewart came to the district after his 2009 retirement as executive director the Florida High School Athletic Association. He led the Polk County school district for 13 years until 1996 and later spent three years working as a deputy superintendent in Pinellas under Howard Hinesley.
Two months after Stewart assumed Janssen's position, the board decided to drop the word "interim" from his title, saying they were quite impressed with the job he was doing.
Should the board keep him through July 2013, it allows them to hire a new leader in time for the start of a new school year.