Originally created 04/17/99

Superintendent to serve for another three years



Richmond County Superintendent Charles Larke will serve the county for three more years.

Board members, by a 6-3 vote late Thursday, approved another contract for Dr. Larke after coming out of a closed-door meeting.

It begins July 1 and ends June 30, 2002, and includes a deferred annuity package that will be decided this budget year.

Dr. Larke is eligible to retire with full benefits, having served 31 1/2 years in the Georgia school system, but he decided to stay.

"I'm 50 years old, and my dad says it's too early to retire," Dr. Larke said. "I'm not interested in another career. I still have a lot of things I would like to accomplish with the school system.

"In the last three year I've had offers from other areas of the country, but I've never applied anywhere else," Dr. Larke said. "I plan to retire in Augusta."

Dr. Larke was appointed superintendent in 1996 and makes about $133,730 a year, plus benefits.

Trustees Barbara Padgett, Kenneth Echols and Cherie Foster voted against the contract. Trustees Adna Stein, Y.N. Myers, Kingsley Riley, Eloise Curtis, John Seitz and board president Mary Oglesby voted for it. Board Vice President Andrew Jefferson was absent.

"It was not so much a vote against him, but the budget is tight and I want to see where we are before we make a commitment," Mrs. Foster said.

Dr. Larke said money wasn't an issue in him accepting the contract renewal.

Faith Johnson can be reached at (706) 823-3765 or faithj@augustachronicle.com.