Dr. Larke Responds to Contract Controversy

By: Domonique Benn
By: Domonique Benn

February 23, 2006
Richmond County school board member A.K. Hasan says he is looking out for the system and that is why he wants Superintendent Charles Larke’s contract to end in 2008 instead of him possibly getting a one-year extension if he gets a satisfactory review.

But this situation is not the first of its kind Hasan has been involved in. Back in 1993 A.K. Hasan was on the board. He was part of a group that voted to terminate the contract for the superintendent back then. Dr. Charles Larke says it all comes down to micromanaging.

Richmond County School Board Superintendent Dr. Charles Larke says there is nothing illegal about his contract. There’s a beginning and ending date, also an opportunity to renew for an additional year. Board member A.K. Hasan disagrees with the structure.

“I’m sure he acknowledges the first day we met which is when list was presented that I thought the contract he currently operates under should be his last contract June 30, 2008,” Hasan said.

But Dr. Larke, a 36-year veteran of the school system, 11 of those years spent as superintendent, thinks it is a personal attack after he refused to hire some of the people on this list brought by Hasan.

“Some of the things appear to be illegal, unethical and to me this is micromanaging which goes against the board’s code of ethics,” Larke said.

And this isn’t the first time Hasan has had trouble with a superintendent. As a board member back in 1983, he helped take out the superintendent during that time.

“At that time was not functioning in the best interest of the school system. As a result the majority of the board voted him out, I was a part of that and very proud to be a part of that,” Hasan said.

But Hasan says Dr. Larke is not doing a bad job, it’s just time for a change. It’s something Dr. Larke doesn’t understand and wonders about age discrimination.

“He’s looking after his future. I’m looking after the system,” Hasan said.

“I’m concerned about the appearance based on age and gender based on some comments that were made to me and I plan to discuss those in executive session,” Larke said.

Dr. Larke has an upcoming evaluation by board members on March 6th.

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