AASA Releases 2018-19 Superintendent Salary Study



James Minichello
703-774-6953 (cell)

Los Angeles – Feb. 13, 2019 – At the outset of the National Conference on Education, where hundreds of school district leaders are convening in Los Angeles, Calif., Feb. 14-16, AASA, The School Superintendents Association, released its seventh annual salary study to benchmark superintendent compensation and benefits.       

The report, 2018-19 AASA Superintendent Salary & Benefits Study, was released in two versions: a full version for AASA members and an abridged version for wider circulation. More than 1,400 responses were received.

The demands placed on a superintendents desk exceed that of just about every other occupation in America, which is why we see this report as a valuable tool for our members, said Daniel A. Domenech, AASA executive director. The rich data generated in this survey provide key benchmarks when comparing how leaders of other industries are compensated in small, medium and large communities.  

Major findings include:

  • Base salaries ranged from $42,000 to $397,953, with a median of $92,000 and $236,000 depending on district enrollment (size).
  • Respondents are predominately male (75 percent), white (89.9 percent) and from intermediate-sized districts (300-2,499 students, 54.4 percent) regardless of their gender. Nearly two-thirds of the respondents (65.2 percent), regardless of gender, indicated that their district is best described as rural.
  • Female respondents were, on average, slightly older than male respondents (with a median age of 53 to 52, respectively).
  • On the issue of longevity, more than half of the respondents have served in their present position between one and five years, with less than 15 percent exceeding 10 years. Males report somewhat greater longevity in the superintendency than females, although the longevity of female superintendents has increased substantially over the previous years of this study.
  • Few superintendents (15.1 percent) see their district’s economic condition as strong. Slightly more than half (56 percent) see their district’s economic condition as stable. Slightly more than one quarter (28.6 percent) describe the economic condition of their district as declining.    

To access a copy of the 2018-19 AASA Superintendent Salary & Benefits Study, click here. AASA members can access the full member-only version through My.AASA.org. This version will be available on Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019.  

For specific questions about the report, contact Noelle Ellerson Ng, AASA associate executive director, policy and advocacy, at nellerson@aasa.org. For more information about the 2019 National Conference on Education, access AASA’s Conference Daily Online.


Members of the media are invited to attend a two-hour session at the National Conference on Education aimed to provide a complete overview of key provisions for superintendent contracts. This session, moderated by Maree Sneed, partner, Hogan Lovells US LLP, Washington, D.C., and Robert S. McCord, consultant, AASA, will be held on Thursday, Feb. 14, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m., in room 511A at the Los Angeles Convention Center. 


About AASA  
AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to equitable access for all students to the highest quality public education. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.