Education Leeds, the new company being set up to run the city's schools after a damning OFSTED report, is offering a negotiable six-figure salary and bonus for the post of chief executive.
The city will still have pound;80,000-a-year chief education officer, Keith Burton, who will be responsible for ensuring the council fulfils its legal obligations, advising members and liaising with Education Leeds.
A spokeswoman said the authorit was talking to the Department for Education and Employment about funding Education Leeds - a partnership between the city council and a private-sector partner. The three shortlisted companies are: consulting engineers WS Atkins; facilities specialist Serco; and Capita, the school and business services company.
Meanwhile, the south London borough of Lewisham has advertised for an executive director for education and culture on pound;98,000.
Incumbent Althea Efunshile has been poached by the Government to head up its new children and young people's unit.