BENNINGTON -- Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union Superintendent Catherine McClure announced Monday during a Personnel Committee meeting that she will not extend her contract past June 2014, and that she hopes to leave before the expiration of her current contract on June 30.
With a definite date of retirement undecided at this point, the committee began discussing a plan for finding a replacement for McClure -- a discussion that will continue during tonight's SVSU Board of Directors meeting.
McClure said she plans to stay through an effective transition.
"I care about the supervisory union and the member districts," she said in an interview with the Banner Tuesday. "I really want to make sure there's a good plan for the transition. The timing right now is flexible and really depends on the search and what kind of candidates respond."
Time to move on
In a statement e-mailed Monday morning to all SVSU board and prudential committee members, McClure said that, by virtue, superintendents recognize when it is time to move on. She said that her decision to retire stemmed from a deep respect for the SU, its employees, board members, and member school districts, but also because the lack of consolidation amongst the seven boards has left her feeling overwhelmed.
"I'm not able to give the attention I need to board development and policy work because I spend a lot of time on human resources work," she said. "I have high expectations of my work and I'm not meeting my own expectations, so, it's time for new leadership."
McClure said perhaps a change in leadership would help the community transition more successfully into a new year.
"This is a new year and a new beginning," McClure said. "We've identified the areas that need improvement and we're working hard to meet our goals. "
Since being elected superintendent in 2009, McClure has faced many challenges, most highly publicized, including a 2011 teachers' strike and the transition of the North Bennington Graded School from a public school to the independent Village School of North Bennington, but, overall, she said that she feels her experience as superintendent has been a positive one.
"I've found many rewards in my service here," she said. "We can be proud of the range of educational opportunities offered to our students and the dedication of our administrators."
The SVSU will meet tonight at MAU Middle School library beginning at 6:30.
Contact Elizabeth Conkey at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @bethconkey.