In these challenging financial times, this newspaper was surprised to see a recent article in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporting four of our state college presidents will receive substantial pay raises.
According to the AJC report, the outgoing president of the University of Georgia Michael Adams, is going to receive $5 million dollars over five years, in addition to a one-time deferred compensation payment of $600,000.
It seems the Board of Regents, which is a group of political appointees of the governor, must be out of touch with the challenges facing education. Local schools are under continued budgetary pressure, the Hope Scholarship is in danger of having to make addition reductions to program funding, and nationwide citizens are increasingly burdened with soaring student loan debts and are teetering on default.
In Newton County we've had positions cut, furloughs and the elimination of worthwhile learning projects. Georgia as a whole has a long way to go before it leads the nation in educational excellence.
The university presidents getting raises may very well deserve their increase, but on paper it sure seems like we are sending the wrong message for those fighting on the frontline.
In any viable business it is crucial to take in more than is paid out. The citizens of the state are all witnesses to declining sources of revenues for education, leading to reductions in budgetary cuts. Is it really the time to pay bonuses to highly compensated university executives? This newspaper realizes in the grand scheme of things this money is a drop in the bucket, but the message being sent is certainly the wrong one.