Press-Republican

April 30, 2013

Lake Placid Elementary principal resigns

By KIM SMITH DEDAM
Press-Republican

---- — LAKE PLACID — A third principal vacancy has opened in Lake Placid School District.

The school announced Monday that Elementary School Principal Javier Perez had tendered his resignation.

HEADED TO AVCS

In a prepared statement, administrators said, “Mr. Perez accepted the position of high-school principal for the AuSable Valley Central School District, his hometown.”

The anticipated vacancy comes as a search is still under way for both Middle and High School principals in Lake Placid.

School Superintendent Dr. Randy Richards said in an interview Monday that they are completing a search to fill those posts now.

“I anticipate they will appoint two principals at the next (school) board meeting on May 7,” he said.

JULY 1 TARGET

The new departure will keep the search process open and ongoing.

“Mr. Perez offered a letter of resignation, which the board will act on at the May 7 meeting, as well,” Richards said.

“In the meantime, they’ll post an anticipated vacancy for Elementary School principal. They’ll work hard to get somebody appointed by July 1 and will use the end of May and June to get someone brought forward to the full board.”

A hiring committee comprising teachers, administration, community members and staff has worked to implement the hiring process.

INTERIM ADMINISTRATORS

The school year began with two interim hires, as retired Lake Placid Elementary School Principal Richard Retrosi filled the Middle School post and former BOCES administrator Greg Camelo handled the High School principal’s job.

Camelo had a short-term agreement and left, as he had planned, in January.

The School Board then expanded Retrosi’s interim job to encompass grades 6 through 12.

School officials made an offer to one candidate for high-school principal in December, but the finalist withdrew, leaving the district to reset the hiring process.

3 JOBS MAINTAINED

The district pays just over $350,000 for all three positions, and job sharing has been discussed.

But the School Board has pressed ahead to maintain all three posts, based on input from students and current administrators.

The school’s administration, like every district in the state, is tasked this year with conducting the Annual Professional Performance Review for all teachers, which involves monitoring each teacher’s classroom performance.

RICHARDS LEAVING

In addition to the three principals, Richards’s job as superintendent will also soon be vacant.

His contract was not renewed last year by the School Board and is set to expire June 30.

“I will be using some accrued vacation time and will work until Memorial Day weekend,” Richards said Monday.

He plans to leave the district after that.

“I’m not sure yet what’s next. I’ve been doing some interviewing,” he said of his plans for the future.

The sea change in leadership means virtually all four top administrative positions in Lake Placid schools will be new hires. 

The superintendent said the school community appreciates “Mr. Perez’s leadership as both elementary principal and director of special education during his two years with the district.”

Email Kim Smith Dedam: kdedam@pressrepublican.com