Thomas Scarice featured image
Supt. of Schools Thomas Scarice

By Thane Grauel

WESTPORT — Supt. of Schools Thomas Scarice and his top aides were once again the highest-paid school system employees in 2023.

Staff wages and benefits have in recent years accounted for roughly 80 percent of the Board of Education budget.

Scarice declined to comment on the last calendar year’s 25 top wage earners, a list released by Elio Longo, the school district’s chief financial officer. He also had the school district’s largest compensation package in 2022.

It’s a big chunk of change.

As assuredly is the town-side list of top-wage earners, still awaiting a Westport Journal records response from the town.

Education spending is the larger part of overall town spending. The annual budget process is under way, and so far the Board of Education on Thursday adopted a $147,300,744 proposed budget for the 2024-25 fiscal year. It will be reviewed by town boards before its final adoption in the spring. The request is $11 million more than the current year — an 8.08 percent increase.

Here are Westport public schools’ top 25 earners from 2023:

  1. Scarice was paid $307,744 in salary, $6,890 in vacation compensation, a $10,000 tax sheltered annuity, $10,305 in “other/extra earnings,” totaling $334,941.
  2. Elio Longo, chief financial officer, was number two on the list of top-compensated district employees, paid $251,821 in salary, plus $11,615 in vacation compensation, $5,000 in a sheltered annuity, for a total of $268,436.
  3. Assistant Supt. for Teaching and Learning Anthony Buono was paid $238,538 in salary and $11,052 in vacation compensation for a total of $249,590.
  4. Assistant Supt. for Pupil Services Michael Rizzo earned $232,400 in salary, $10,563 in vacation compensation and $5,000 in a sheltered annuity for a total of $247,963.
  5. Assistant Supt. for Human Resources and General Administration John Bayers was paid $224,242 in salary, $5,021 in vacation compensation and $5,000 in a sheltered annuity for a total of $234,263.
  6. Staples High School Principal Stafford Thomas had a salary of $223,108 and other/extra earnings of $2,500 for a total of $225,608.
  7. Bedford Middle School Principal Adam Rosen had a salary of $203,125.
  8. Saugatuck Elementary School Principal Elizabeth Messler had a salary of $196,245.
  9. Director of Technology Natalie Carrignan had a salary of $196,245.
  10. Coleytown Elementary School Principal Janna Sirowich earned a salary of $196,245.
  11. Long Lots Principal Kimberly Amborosio earned a salary of $194,019.
  12. Kings Highway Principal Tracey Carbone earned a salary of $194,019.
  13. Coleytown Middle School Principal Parthena Proskinitopoulos earned a salary of $190,767 and other/extra earnings of $115.17 for a total of $190,882.
  14. Staples Assistant Principal James Farnen earned a salary of $183,827 and other/extra earnings of $1,670 for a total of $185,497.
  15. Staples Assistant Principal Patrick Micinilio earned a salary of $183,827 and other/extra earnings of $1,670 for a total of $184,965.
  16. Staples Assistant Principal Micah Lawrence earned a salary of $183,827 and other/extra earnings of $115 for a total of $183,942.
  17. Bedford Middle School Assistant Principal Denise Emmerthal earned a salary of $183,827 and other/extra earnings of $115 for a total of $183,942.
  18. Staples High School Assistant Principal for Special Education Rosemarie Ampha earned a salary of $183,827 and other/extra earnings of $115 for a total of $183,942.
  19. Coleytown Assistant Middle School Principal Lauren Pitocco earned a salary of $183,827 and other/extra earnings of $115 for a total of $183,942.
  20. Bedford Middle School Assistant Principal Megan Gallant earned a salary of $182,180 and other/extra earnings of $115 for a total of $182,295.
  21. Coordinator of Guidance William Plunkett earned a salary of $171,274 with other/extra earnings of $9,662 for a total of $180,936.
  22. Staples Assistant Principal Christine Cincotta earned a salary of $177,206 with other/extra charges of $115 for a total of $177,321.
  23. Stepping Stones Director Megan Clarke, earned a salary or $173,747, with other/extra earnings of $115 for a total of $173,862.
  24. Administrative coordinator Lauren Francese earned a salary of $172,174.
  25. Coordinator of Psychological Services Valerie Babich earned a salary of $172,158, with other/extra earnings of $115 for a total of $172,643.

Thane Grauel grew up in Westport and has been a journalist in Fairfield County and beyond for 35 years. Reach him. Learn more about us here.