The Grapevine-Colleyville ISD board of trustees voted 6-1 Feb. 26 to extend Superintendent Brad Schnautz's contract to Feb. 26, 2029. Concerns over the inclusion of performance incentives in the superintendent's new contract led Place 2 trustee Becky St. John to be the lone vote against it.

The details

Board President Shannon Braun said that by giving Schnautz a five-year term extension on his contract, it gives the district stability. She praised Schnautz for “working tirelessly and taking the job very seriously.”

“This job has a lot of weight and burden attached to it, and there is a lot at stake,” Braun said.

She added that under Schnautz’s leadership, the district has made “a lot of strides,” and that the board added an addendum to his contract to give him bonuses for the completion of priorities set by the community and by the board.

Braun said that these priorities include:
  • A balanced budget
  • An academic bar
  • A teacher component
  • An administrative-teacher ratio component
Braun said that these priorities will be evaluated annually.

“This is an inventive bonus structure for public education, and I’m anxious to see Dr. Schnautz succeed,” Braun said.

What they’re saying

Place 4 trustee Kathy Spradley talked about what Schnautz brings to the district.

“It is a joy to watch you in this role,” Spradley said. “You bring joy to GCISD.”

While St. John praised Schnautz for his work in the superintendent role, she also voiced concerns about the fairness of his new contract.

“You have stepped into a role that wasn’t easy to fill,” St. John said. “And because of that, you deserve a fair contract. I don’t think this incentive plan is fair to you.”

St. John’s first concern focused on the balanced budget portion of the amendment, stating that it should include room for 1% above or below a balanced budget. She said that tying Schnautz's incentive to balancing the budget year after year would result in a difficult choice.

“There’s only two ways you’re going to be able to meet that: you’re either going to cut staff, or you’re going to raise taxes,” St. John said.

She added that the second part of the amendment that focuses on academics isn’t fair to students.

“A bonus that is contingent solely upon STAAR scores, I think it’s patently unfair to tie any incentive to simply a number on a STAAR score,” St. John said. “I’m not going to put your performance bonus on the backs of our kids.”

A closer look

Under the terms of the new contract, Schnautz’s annual salary amounts to $312,000. As the contract amendment states, in order for him to receive bonuses, he must first demonstrate to the board that total expenses were less than total revenue for the current budget year and present a balanced budget to the board for implementation in the next budget year.

Should those two conditions be met, then the amendment states that Schnautz would be eligible to bonus payments as follows:
  • Academics: If the results of the district's Texas academic performance report for then-available academic year for "all grades, all subjects" for students who "meet grade level or above" demonstrate that the district's score is 71 or 73, the superintendent shall be entitled to a bonus of $5,000. Should the district's score be 78 or above, Schnautz would be entitled to a bonus of an additional $10,000.
  • Personnel: If the district's turnover numbers are less than the prior year's by 3 percentage points, Schnautz would be entitled to a bonus payment of an additional $5,000. If the district's percentage of campus and district administrators stays below the state average, he would be entitled to a bonus payment of an additional $5,000.
According to the contract amendment, payout for elements of the bonus plan achieved will be January 2025 using data received from the Texas academic performance report that is released in December 2024.

As part of his acceptance of the contract extension, Schnautz thanked his wife for her support. He also thanked the board for the honor of serving them and the community as superintendent.

“I want to thank the board for 11 months ago having the confidence in me to give me a shot,” Schnautz said. “I love it. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it. It’s what we’re called to do.”

He also thanked GCISD employees for the hard work they complete on a daily basis.

“The women and men that we serve with that are on the front lines doing this work to serve and support our campuses, that’s what it’s about," Schnautz said. "It’s about our children.”