|The real ASU President steps down|
|Written by News Desk|
|Thursday, 01 May 2014 08:30|
Longtime Alabama State University Executive Vice President (ASU) and State Rep. John Knight (D) from Montgomery has retired from Alabama State University, the historically Black institution in Montgomery.
Representative Knight's retirement is just four months after the Alabama State University Board of Trustees chose ASU alum, Dr. Gwendolyn Boyd to serve as its new president. Boyd is only the 14th President in ASU's 146 year history and the first woman to serve as President. President Boyd succeeded interim President and President Emeritus, Dr. William H. Harris.
Knight's retirement comes after two years of confusion at the school. At one point former ASU President Joseph Silver attempted to fire Knight in a Board of Trustees meeting. Silver was then fired shortly thereafter. He had been on the job for less than a year.
For many years, Knight, a long time member of the Alabama House of Representatives, was generally perceived as the person who "really ran things" at ASU and during the current crisis it has been his solid leadership that has held things together at the school.
Knight, however, is facing a choice since he can no longer serve in the legislature and at the same time hold an office at a university.
Boyd said all the remaining vice presidents at the school, which have been reduced to five, would report to her under a new organizational chart. Knight, whose tenure at the historically black school including being the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit over state funding and racial fairness, said he would continue supporting his alma mater.
"It's in good hands. I think that we will move forward," Knight told me over the weekend.
AEA fundraising: neutered or not?
The State Department of Education is telling school boards throughout the state that they must begin complying with a new law aimed at reducing the funding of the Alabama Education Association (AEA). The law, which passed the Alabama Legislature and was signed into law by Gov. Robert Bentley in 2010, forbids teachers and other educational employees from being able to check-off a box to contribute a portion of their pay to AEA.
To get a realistic appraisal of the new law and how it would affect AEA, I caught up with Dr. Paul Hubbert, who ran the AEA for decades, to get his take on the effect it would have on the association's revenues. "It will definitely have an effect," Hubbert said but the system has been actively working on setting up a bank draft system for payroll deductions for the past four years.
He said that in his opinion roughly 70 percent of AEA members have signed up. "The law certainly doesn't help teachers and school personnel but I believe our current leadership will overcome any difficulty the law causes." Between June of last year and March in 2014, (A VOTE) the teacher's political action committee received over $2 million in payroll deductions.
Hubbert says he believes that when the kinks are worked out, the AEA effort toward providing Alabama students a quality education will not be harmed as much as some have predicted.
It is interesting that big business PACS will be facing the same collecting dilemma. The Business Council of Alabama (BCA) Progress PAC raises around $800,000 a year and Alfa's Farm PAC brings in over a half million a year. However, I'm not going to shed a tear for these guys. They will always have plenty of cash.
It is my opinion that the attempts by the current legislature to harm those who try their very best to educate our children and grandchildren at some of the lowest pay in the United States, are subjected to the kind of disrespect for their service by some of those who represent us in the state's lawmaking body borders on the incredible.
Those who are able to send their children to the best private schools in places like Montgomery, Birmingham and Mobile likely don't understand what the teachers in the public schools in those areas must deal with every day.
It is important that we give our teachers the best environment possible and most often that takes money. This is my rant for 2014.
|Last Updated on Thursday, 01 May 2014 08:40|
Tri City Baptist Church burned down in September 2013, and the new building is starting to take shape. Tri City Baptist is located at the site of the old St. Elizabeth Anne Seaton Catholic Church in Millbrook and it was that building that burned. In the meantime the church has continued to meet at an alternative location while their new building is under construction.Read more...
Special to The Indy
Students, parents and teachers across Elmore County are making preparations for the upcoming school year which begins August 10, 2015 and students, teachers and parents are making preparations begin a new year of learning. This year the local community can help provide school supplies for students in need with the Stuff the Bus Campaign.Read more...
Local LinksThe Millbrook Community Players"The Life and Times of Patsy Cline" with Tina MarieAugust 28-30. General admission $11.The Millbrook Revelers
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