2014-06-12 / Front Page

Superintendent announces retirement

By Tim Riel

Dr. Marcia Lukon will retire as superintendent of Jamestown schools, the School Committee made public at its June 5 meeting.

Lukon announced her intentions to retire by reading a letter dated May 20 that was addressed to Chairwoman Cathy Kaiser. The letter was first seen by committee members during their May 29 executive session.

Lukon said accepting the Jamestown job was “one of the best decisions” she’s ever made. Although her contract requires a 60-day notice, Lukon said she will remain at her post until the district has a new leader in place.

In another revelation, Kathy Almanzor announced her intentions to retire when she becomes eligible in November. Before being named the district’s inaugural curriculum director in May 2012, Almanzor was a principal in town for 10 years.

Lukon was hired to replace Dr. Robert Power as superintendent in July 2007. She previously worked as superintendent in the Berlin- Boylston and Norfolk public school systems in Massachusetts.

“Jamestown is an amazing place,” Lukon wrote in her resignation letter. “I love this community and I love our schools. I am proud of the progress we have made and having played a role in improving the education we provide for our students. The decision to retire has been an emotional thing for me to do.”

The school board will now work to appoint a search committee. The panel will be tasked with interviewing candidates and recommending three finalists by Aug. 20. A search committee is expected to be announced on July 10.

“I believe that by beginning the search and hiring process immediately, a new superintendent can be hired in time to begin the new school year,” said Lukon. “If the process takes longer, I am willing to continue as superintendent until the right person accepts the position. While there is never a perfect time for this type of transition, I believe that this is the right time for me.”

Before a search committee is formed, however, Kaiser said the school board will discuss consolidating the positions of superintendent and curriculum director. Currently, the superintendent position is a part-time job budgeted at $68,380 for 120 days in the upcoming fiscal year. The setaside for curriculum director is $113,394.

The school board will discuss the possible redesign of the superintendent position at its June 19 meeting.

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