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By Walter Stern, Savannah Morning News, Ga. Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
Feb. 16--Two days before he left the superintendent's post at Savannah-Chatham County Public Schools, John F. O'Sullivan Jr. informed the school board he'd issued pay raises to principals at the district's five alternative education centers.
The largest of those raises could amount to more than a 30 percent pay increase. Board members, including some who pushed for O'Sullivan's ouster, agreed the principals may have deserved the raises after years of being underpaid. But the chaotic state of the district's human resources department makes it nearly impossible to determine whether the system's administrative salaries are equitable.
An internal audit released in December revealed outdated and unevenly applied pay scales; administrators who did not receive equal pay for equal work; and a lack of documentation on the basis of some administrators' raises.
Gary Lawrence, the district's director of internal audit, said his team, which conducted its review before O'Sullivan granted the raises, could not link the alternative school principals to any of the scales the district uses to determine how much an employee is paid. "Until those tables are developed," Lawrence said, "I don't know how people can evaluate (the raises)."
Even the amount O'Sullivan increased each individual's salary is foggy because of the district's reluctance to talk about the raises.
According to documents obtained through an open records request, Coastal Georgia Comprehensive Academy principal Steve Derr's …