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School Superintendent Desper announces retirement



[UPDATED: The school board held a called meeting Thursday. Following a lengthy executive session, it was announced that their attorney would handle details involved in finding an interim-superintendent who could quickly assume the top position in the system and the board would begin planning a search for a permanent replacement.]


In an e-mail to school board members yesterday, Superintendent Ben Desper announced his retirement, effective at the end of June.

            He was wrapping up his second year serving as the superintendent for Pickens schools (see Progress story when he was hired). His contract had been extended for several additional years last year.

            School board chair Wendy Lowe confirmed that the superintendent had announced his retirement in a brief interview Wednesday. She said it did not come as a complete surprise to board members but there were issues that will be discussed in a meeting later this week.

            Lowe said the board will need to decide how to proceed but she anticipated they would follow the same procedure as when Desper was hired – to first name an interim and then conduct a search for a replacement.


            With the budget not finalized for this year, Lowe said it is important to have someone in the office to keep things moving, but she noted that with an experienced finance director, they shouldn’t have any added difficulties wrapping up the budget process.



See complete story in next week's print edition.





+17 #1 Taxpayer 2013-05-29 10:07
I think I made a mistake voting for the current board members.
A superintendent can't be successful without the "support" of the board.
Wasn't there just a system in the news that was investigated and replaced for micro-managing ........SACS violation maybe ????
Leslie L.
+2 #2 Leslie L. 2013-05-29 11:22
I think it's time to put the choice of Superintend back too us the public. I think we made much better choices in the past, than the Board of Education. I also wonder how much we will have to pay Dr. Desper in his retirement for his small amount of time he served us. Never making the choice to live here, I believe the Superintend of our school's should be from here.
pickens preference
0 #3 pickens preference 2013-05-29 19:59
Whoever they hire they need to make sure the contract is ironclad that they move to this county quickly. The top person in a system needs to be part of the community.
no politics
+5 #4 no politics 2013-05-29 20:50
Voting is no good for these types of jobs. It makes it all politics. Desper was free from worries about votes that's why he could do what needed to be done.
+2 #5 Taxpayer 2013-05-30 08:26
Quoting pickens preference:
Whoever they hire they need to make sure the contract is ironclad that they move to this county quickly. The top person in a system needs to be part of the community.

The last super lived here........jus t saying!
+21 #6 WestEnd 2013-05-31 08:48
I just hope the new superintendent gives us back our principal. I fear our school will go from first to worst......
-9 #7 hillcityfan 2013-05-31 10:56
My three children have gone to the school over the years. I don't think that you know what really happens there west end. In my experience the principal has always been more interested in boy scouts and the sheriff's department than school. The teachers, kids, and probably the AP are the ones that you should be looking at about the scores not a principal that is always gone doing something else.
West End
+9 #8 West End 2013-05-31 12:22
The staff is great!!! Spending of budget wisely and moral go a long way. If principals didn't make a difference than why do we pay them so much?
Bob Rose
+4 #9 Bob Rose 2013-05-31 21:03
According to Marilyn Adams' new book, only a minority of kids finishing first-grade can write and name all of the alphabet letters. Any new super should bring some pencils to the job!

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