Chattanooga - Jim Scales' buyout to cost $282,000

Chattanooga - Jim Scales' buyout to cost $282,000

May 24th, 2011 by Adam Crisp in News

Hamilton County Schools Superintendent Jim Scales announces during a news conference Tuesday that he has reached a tentative buyout agreement to leave the system. Staff Photo by Jenna Walker/Chattanooga Times Free Press

Document: Scales Agreement

Jim Scales agreement document

Hamilton County schools Superintendent Jim Scales will receive $282,111 for his early departure from the school system if Board of Education members agree to buy out his contract Thursday.

The terms of his early departure were released Monday by the school system. Previously, school board attorney Scott Bennett said the buyout would amount to Scales' yearly salary plus payment for his accrued vacation and sick days, but the total amount was not released.

Scales will receive one check that includes his yearly salary of $202,274, plus $62,981 for his accrued vacation time and $16,200 for his vacation time had he stayed through June 30, 2012.

The proposed buyout agreement was negotiated by Scales, his attorney and Bennett. Scales will be reimbursed for attorney's fees associated with negotiating the buyout.

He also will continue to receive county health benefits until Dec. 31, 2011. This year he also became vested in the Tennessee teacher retirement system and will receive roughly $18,000 yearly from that program.

Earlier this month, Scales announced that he had been in negotiations with the school board to buy out his contract since February. Scales' contract was set to expire in June 2012.

Board members must vote Thursday evening on whether to approve the contract buyout. If they do, Scales will make an exit July 1.

Board members Mike Evatt, Everett Fairchild, Joe Galloway, David Testerman and Rhonda Thurman have indicated they will support the buyout. Chip Baker, Linda Mosley, Jeffrey Wilson and George Ricks said they want Scales to finish his contract.

Contact staff writer Adam Crisp at or 423-757-6323. Follow him online: and