The city's School Committee has awarded an unprecedented five-year contract to incoming school superintendent Jason "Jake" McCandless.
By a 6-1 vote, with Daniel C. Elias opposed, the school board on Wednesday agreed to the long-term deal -- with a starting annual salary of $157,000 -- because it felt McCandless has shown he will be committed to the local school system. Traditionally, the city school board has hired superintendents three years at a time.
"I'm very optimistic and confident we'll look back and find that five years was never an issue," said committee member Mayor Daniel L. Bianchi.
At his present job as Lee Public Schools superintendent, McCandless makes a little more than $100,000.
"I'm very honored the committee was able to think outside what previously has been done in Pittsfield," McCandless said after the vote.