News Story

Hamtramck Superintendent Hasn’t Worked In Four Months But Is Still Getting Paid

School district silent on current status

The most highly paid employee in the Hamtramck Public Schools district has been collecting a paycheck for about four months while staying home and claiming a COVID-19 leave of absence.

Hamtramck Public Schools posted a letter from Superintendent Jaleelah Ahmed, in which she explained that the leave is for her own personal well-being during the pandemic. Ahmed’s gross pay was $176,750 in 2020-21; she was appointed superintendent in July 2019.

“It is my hope that I will return and come back revitalized, with a refreshed perspective to continue to lead our efforts,” Ahmed wrote in the letter.

According to district records, Ahmed has been collecting regular paychecks the entire time she has been off the job. She remains on the district’s payroll as of Feb. 18, more than a month after a Jan. 10, 2022, self-declared back-to-work deadline.

Hamtramck’s acting superintendent Nabil Nagi did not respond to an email seeking comment on Ahmed’s status. As of Feb. 28, the school district’s website did not recognize Ahmed in any role.

Ahmed notified district officials on Oct. 11, 2021, that she would stop performing her duties as superintendent until Jan. 10, 2022. The district responded by stripping her of school building and communications access codes, keys and pass cards. According to a letter the district sent to Ahmed on Oct. 14, 2021, she was also barred from taking any actions as a school official.

According to district payroll records, Ahmed was still collecting paychecks as of Feb. 18, 2022.

The information was contained in the district’s response to a Freedom of Information Act request.

Michigan Capitol Confidential is the news source produced by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Michigan Capitol Confidential reports with a free-market news perspective.