BALTIMORE — The Baltimore City school board has voted to increase the superintendent’s salary from $298,000 a year to $325,000 a year.

The Baltimore Sun reported Thursday that the pay is believed to be the highest ever earned by a superintendent in the state.

Schools chief Sonja Santelises will also make about $20,000 less than the chancellor of New York City’s public schools. There are nearly 1 million children in that city’s school district. Baltimore’s enrollment is about 80,000.

School board members say they feared losing Santelises to other school systems.

“With the skill and expertise she has other people would like to have her,” school board chair Linda Chinnia said.

Santelises is finishing up her fourth year in the city.

Nationwide, the median salary for a superintendent overseeing a system of over 25,000 students is $236,000. That’s according to statistics gathered by the American Association of School Administrators.

Superintendents in some wealthy suburban districts are making more than $400,000. That’s according to Dan Domenech, executive director of AASA.

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