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BOE approves Fuhrey's contract
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The salary for Newton County Schools’ next superintendent is about $10,000 less than outgoing Superintendent Gary Mathews was paid.

The Newton County Board of Education approved superintendent-elect Samantha Fuhrey’s contract at its Tuesday board meeting.

Fuhrey will be paid an annual salary of $149,900, in monthly installments, according to her three-year contract approved by the board. Mathews’ beginning salary in March 2010 was $159,400; and Mathews’ predecessor Steve Whatley, was paid $148,030.

According to Fuhrey’s contract, increases in salary or benefits may be negotiated with or granted by the board at any time, but will be discussed each year at the time of the superintendent’s evaluation.

Fuhrey’s contract was approved in a 4-1 vote and signed at the May 21 board meeting. Board member Eddie Johnson voted against approving Fuhrey’s three-year contract, and did not sign it.

At the May 14 BOE meeting, the board voted 3-2 to approve Fuhrey as its next NCSS superintendent.

Board members Jeff Meadors, Shakila Henderson-Baker and BOE Chair Abigail Coggin voted yes, while Almon Turner and Johnson opposed the motion.

Johnson had no comment about why he voted in opposition, and said the board "went through a process, and the process was done.’’

Fuhrey’s three-year contract runs from July 1 to June 30, 2016. Mathews’ contract expires on June 30. Her contract may be renewed, extended, or renegotiated at any time by mutual agreement of parties each year in connection with the superintendent’s evaluation.

According to the contract, the superintendent will discuss whether to extend the contract for an additional year or make modifications to the contract.

The board will pay Fuhrey $500 per month for automobile expenses and business travel. In addition, the board will directly pay or reimburse her for any out-of-pocket expenses for travel such as lodging, meals and mileage in connection with her duties.

Fuhrey will be paid $7,000 each year toward a Tax Sheltered Annuity of her choice.

Fuhrey will have all insurance benefits and other employee benefits awarded to all other 12-month administrative employees of the school system. According to the contract, Fuhrey and her family will have State Health Benefit Plan coverage, which includes dental/hearing/optical plans available to employees of the school system.

The contract may be terminated by mutual agreement; disability of the superintendent; through discharge of cause; death of the superintendent; or termination by the board without cause by agreeing to pay Fuhrey the full balance of any and all annual base salary due.

Fuhrey has a bachelor’s degree in secondary English from Marywood and a master’s degree in educational leadership from State University of West Georgia.

She also holds an education specialist’s degree in educational leadership from Georgia College and State University.

She has served as deputy superintendent for curriculum and instruction for NCSS for the past year, overseeing a staff of 1,000 teachers and administrators.

Prior to that, Fuhrey served as executive director for secondary education, director of secondary education, and director of professional learning for Newton County Schools.

She also served as principal and assistant principal at Indian Creek Middle School.

Before working with Newton County Schools, she worked for the DeKalb County School System as an assistant principal and an English teacher.

Fuhrey, her husband Bill, and 8-year-old daughter Eva, who attends school in the NCSS, live in Oxford.