Former Georgia state schools Superintendent Linda C. Schrenko pleaded not guilty last week to stealing more than $600,000 in federal education funds while she was in office. She was released on a $40,000 bond.
Ms. Schrenko, 54, a Republican who clashed with governors, state board members, and education groups during her two terms as the elected chief, is accused of funneling much of the money to her failed 2002 campaign for governor and for using some of it on a facelift.
Two men charged in the indictment—Merle Temple Jr., the former deputy superintendent, and Stephan Botes, a computer consultant—also pleaded not guilty and are free on bail.
The magistrate judge asked Ms. Schrenko to submit to a drug test. Ms. Schrenko takes a variety of prescription medications for back and neck pain.
A version of this article appeared in the November 24, 2004 edition of Education Week