Exeter`s highest paid headteacher Steve Maddern has been suspended this afternoon as a result of the ongoing investigation into his salary of £150,000 a year. The figure is almost £10,000 higher than the Prime Minister and £60,000 higher than the second highest paid headteacher in the city.
Fellow staff at West Exe Technology College were informed at a meeting after school today. Devon county council was asked to investigate the salaries of senior staff at the school following the resignation of the head of governors in February.
A spokesman for Devon County Council told me the decision to suspend Mr Maddern "was a neutral act." No further details were given. It is the protocal in these circumstances that decision was investigated by the current governors even though they are not in charge of the current inquiries.
Guidelines state the recommended maximum pay award for a headteacher outside of London should be no more than £106,000 but governors can award more in exceptional circumstances. Academic results have improved in recent years at West Exe but in common with other schools in the city. His salary however is not thought to be the highest in the westcountry for a head teacher.
It's not clear what decisions are likely to be made in future over his position at the school. Two investigations are continuing, one is examining the salaries of senior staff and the other is an audit of the accounts and the decision processes which led to the high pay award.