Published Online: March 13, 2002
Published in Print: March 13, 2002, as State Journal

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On the Road Again

Linda C. Schrenko, Georgia's superintendent of schools, has been keeping a busy travel schedule, according to new state figures.

Ms. Schrenko spent more on travel during fiscal 2001 than any other elected official in the state, a recently released state audit of travel expenses reports.

Linda C. Schrenko

The audit, which was prepared by the state department of audits, found that the Republican schools chief spent more than $26,000 on travel between the beginning of July 2000 and the end of June 2001.

It was during that time that Ms. Schrenko began holding a series of "town hall" meetings throughout Georgia to discuss school policy changes initiated by Gov. Roy E. Barnes.

A vocal opponent of the Democratic governor's plans for improving student achievement in the state, Ms. Schrenko has been accused of using the local sessions to criticize Mr. Barnes' education efforts and drum up support for her own ideas.

Ms. Schrenko, who is finishing her second term as the state's elected superintendent, is running in the Aug. 20 gubernatorial primary and hopes to face off against Gov. Barnes in November.

Gov. Barnes is running for a second term.

Ms. Schrenko maintains that as superintendent, she has always visited schools and local communities and doesn't use those visits to campaign for office.

"When I go into classrooms, I am not saying I am running for governor," she told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

"I am reading to children, I am talking to teachers about class size," she added.

Some of the trips have also been to Washington to meet with President Bush or top education officials in his administration.

—Linda Jacobson

Vol. 21, Issue 26, Page 14

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