BERNARDS TOWNSHIP, NJ -- Salaries for most non-unionized Bernards Township school administrators were approved May 18 by the Board of Education.

For the 2020-21 school year, most of the building-level and department supervisors will see salary increases of slightly more than 3 percent.

But the four top administrators will see more than that in their base salaries.

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“In all cases these administrators earned raises commensurate with performance,” said Superintendent Nick Markarian.

The district has two assistant superintendents. Sean Siet, who is responsible for personnel, among other matters, will be paid $190,897, up 4.5 percent. Kristin Fox, the assistant responsible for curriculum and instruction, will receive $170,225, up 6.0 percent.

“In the specific case of Ms. Fox, she is still new to her role and the BOE is looking to move her salary to a more competitive figure over a period of time,” wrote Mr. Markarian.

Business Administrator Roderic McLaughlin will see his salary go to $206,993, up 6.3 percent, but that figure is mitigated by giving up a bonus based on performance.

“His increase reflects the removal of one merit goal valued at 3.33 percent of base pay,” wrote Markarian. “So, in essence his increase is really 3 percent. The value of the merit goal (that he would have earned anyway) was simply moved to base pay.”

As previously reported Markarian agreed to a five-year contract in which he will be paid $216,798 in 2020-21, a six percent increase from the current year. In the remaining four years of the contract extending to June 2025, he is scheduled to receive increases of 5, 3, 3 and 3 percent, he said.

“The larger increases in the first two years were designed to spread out an upward adjustment to reflect performance and the elimination of the (state-imposed) superintendent salary cap, which actually occurred in July of 2019,” he said earlier this month. “Some superintendents negotiated increases in response to the elimination of the salary cap even for 2019-2020; I did not ask to do that.”

Merit pay continues to be excluded from the contract; merit pay could add up to another 14.99 percent of base salary each year, under state guidelines.

Most of the 29 members of the Bernards Township Administrators Association will receive salary increases of 3.2-3.3 percent.

The district has six building principals and five will see increases of 3.2%. Oak Street Elementary School’s Jane Costa, who announced her retirement as of Aug. 31, will see an annual salary of $183,192, beginning July 1. Joanne Hozeny, principal at Mount Prospect Elementary, had her salary set at $167,536, and Liberty Corner Elementary’s James Oliver will get $166,813. Paul Ciempola at Cedar Hill Elementary will receive a salary of $163,203.

Karen Hudock will return to her job as principal of William Annin Middle School at a salary of $178,501 (3.2%). She has been serving as acting principal at Ridge High School since February. In that month Bridgewater-Raritan Superintendent of Schools Russell Lazovick was hired Monday night as principal of Ridge High School, starting July 1, at a salary of $194,391 per year.

Former principal Drew Krause left in late January. Krause’s annual salary was $170,163.

Ridge High assistant principals Scott Thompson will be paid $151,500 (3.2%), Kathleen Dusebout $150,462 (3.2%), Scott Graber $149,165 (3.2%) and Cheryl Howarth $136,194 (3.3%).

The high school has six supervisors who oversee academic departments. Michael Fackleman, supervisor of fine and practical arts, will see a salary of $144,243 (3.2%). David Hunscher (English language arts) $140,380 (3.3%); Katherine Stotler (world languages), $139,092 (3.3%); Thomas Misiak (science) $135,228 (3.3%); Grant Kolmer (math) $130,077 (3.3%), and Jennifer Raphaels (social studies), $109,000 (10.1%).

Richard Shello, director of athletics and supervisor of physical education and health, will be paid $168,069 (2.15%). Stephanie Smith, director of school counseling, had her salary set at $140,748 (3.3%).

Jean O’Connell, director of special education, will see a 2020-21 salary of $168,345, an increase of 2.3%. Lisa Vitale-Stanzione, supervisor of special education for grades kindergarten through eight, will gain $149,395 (3.2%), and Allyson Read, supervisor of special education, $150,103 (3.25%). Stephanie Orr, supervisor of special education, had her salary set at $118,000 (9.25%).

The salaries for assistant principals at William Annin Middle School are Thomas Sharples, $100,000 (11.1%); Daniel Lederer, $137,491 (3.3%), and Adam Torrisi, $138,788 (3.3%). At the elementary schools are Michael Pepitone (Mount Prospect), $136,194 (3.3%); Krissy Uhler (Cedar Hill), $136,194 (3.3%), and Thomas Thorp (Oak Street), $147,868 (3.2%).

Jenna Hawkswell, assistant principal at Liberty Corner School, resigned effective at the end of the school year. She is being paid $133,110 in 2019-20.

 The 32 BTEA secretaries in all the buildings and departments on a range from $55,605 to $65,605. Two are at the lowest amount and five at the highest. In the year ending June 30, the range for the 32 was 51,501 to 60,551, with nine at the top salary.

Non-unionized personnel had salaries set, too.  Alex Blinder, director of information technology, salary at $126,273 (3.0%). Assistant Business Administrator Anthony LaMarco $117,265 (3.0%) and Hank Werner, director of school security and safety, at $74,118 (3.0%), and Rita Zarabara, WAMS coordinator of athletics and organizations, $85,000 (6.25%).

Last year the board and the 500-plus-member Bernards Township Education Association of teachers, nurses, secretaries and aides approved a contract with salary guide increases of 3.16, 3.0 and 3.0 percent over the next three years.

Teachers at the beginning of the guide (bachelor’s degree with no experience) are paid an annual salary of $48,426 under the contract that expires June 30. Next year, starting teachers would be paid $51,427, with the beginning salary going to $52,872 in 2020-21 and $54,380 in 2021-22.