Thursday, January 21, 2010

German Former College President Fined

The Frankfurter Rundschau reports on the case of Prof. Dr. Jürgen Kunze, who used to be the college president of the public business college (FHW) in Berlin and was the founding president of a private business college (OTA-Hochschule). Private colleges and universities are relatively new to Germany.

It seems that in 2001 Prof. Kunze, a professor for finance, applied to the FHW for an academic leave of absence in order to set up this private college. He was relieved of his teaching duties, but his monthly salary kept rolling in. In addition, the new school also payed him a good monthly salary.

According to German public college and university rules, you have to at least tell your school that you are getting a second salary. There is a complicated formula that determines how much of the second salary you have to hand over to the government. It seems, this was forgotten.

The FHW also had granted his leave of absence giving as the reason that this was part of his "duties", which is quite unusual, as the government does not pay people to work for private companies.

Kunze was fined 60.000 Euros, which is a bit more than a one year's salary. Kunze, who has been widely lauded for setting up this private school by the Lord Mayor and others, will be appealing this judgement by the lower courts.

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